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Police probe 11 coronavirus deaths at Kiuruvesi care home

Police in North Savo may launch a preliminary investigation if a criminal report into the deaths is filed.

Attendon hoivakoti Kallionsydän Kiuruvedellä.
The Kallionsydän nursing home in Kiuruvesi was run by private operator Attendo until 9 April. Image: Toni Pitkänen / Yle

Police are looking into the deaths from coronavirus of 11 residents at the Kallionsydän nursing home in the eastern town of Kiuruvesi.

The probe could lead to a preliminary investigation if a criminal report is filed with police.

"We are currently conducting an initial inquiry in accordance with the Preliminary Investigation Act," Minna Immonen, detective chief inspector of the Financial Crime Investigation Unit, told Yle.

She added that the police will work closely with the supervisory authority, the Eastern Finland Regional State Administrative Agency, during the investigation.

Immonen also stated that the request for the preliminary report, on which the police are basing their current investigation, did not come from the regional state agency for the area.

"If certain matters arise in the investigation, the Regional State Agency may file a criminal report," said Ulla Ahonen, Director of the Eastern Finland Regional State Administrative Agency. "We have agreed that in such a case, the matter will be considered together with Valvira [National Supervisory Authority for Welfare and Health]."

Neither Attendo, a private company that ran the nursing home, nor the local Joint Municipal Authority for the North Savo region, have responded to requests for reports on the deaths.

The local authority took over operations at the Kallionsydän unit from private operator Attendo on 9 April. Since the takeover no new Covid-19 infections have been diagnosed among residents or staff members.

The agency has so far not received any complaints regarding the 11 deaths caused by novel coronavirus in the Kallionsydämi nursing home.

Leila Pekkanen, CEO of the local Joint Municipal Authority, informed Yle by email that the issue of a possible criminal report will likely be discussed at the authority’s next board meeting. The date of the meeting has not yet been confirmed.

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