Prior to gaining independence in 1917 from Russia, the Republic of Finland was both a province and duchy of Sweden from the twelfth to nineteenth century and a Russian self-governing duchy after 1809. During the Second World War, Finland worked alongside the Germans to avoid invasion by the Soviet Union, however some of its territory was lost. After becoming a nation, Finland developed a parliamentary republic system of government. Finland has been a member of the European Union since 1995 and the only Nordic country to utilize the euro since 1999. Their decision to join the European Union is due to the security it provided against Russia. As Finland shares a border with Russia and with the past history of war between the two nations, the EU ensured that Finland would be securely guarded by Western Europe. Adapting to a single currency has also allowed for Finland to have a stable economy. Finland is currently a neutral European country. Immediately after the Second World War, a policy of neutrality was created, in their interests to remain unbiased in disputes. In order to ensure their neutrality, Finland will utilize armed forces. Finland has been a member of the United Nations since 1955. Over the sixty years of their membership, Finland has shown great commitment and interest in ensuring a balanced environment worldwide to their own national interests. Finland has promoted international peace and security, equality, and development, in order to strengthen cooperation among all nations. Apart from this, Finland belongs to many international organizations, including NATO, the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council, and many United Nations agencies. In fact, in the year 2015, Finland spent Euro 540 million on multilateral cooperation development. Finland has an active role in NATO, as a contributor to mission and training forces. The Republic of Finland works alongside NATO on peace and security operations. Due to the fact that the Republic of Finland is a Scandinavian nation, the cold climate restricts them from depending on agricultural development to sustain themselves. Therefore, Finland has become a competitive force in the manufacturing industry, relying on trade and imported goods to sustain their manufactured goods. In fact, trade accounts for about one third of the country’s total GDP. The government of Finland is currently open to new foreign direct investments. Finland has been a member of the World Health Organization since _______. The major objective of the Finnish healthcare system is to ensure that all citizens are provided with the best quality of life with little to none differences in health. Their healthcare system works to ensure that each individual is able to sustain a healthy and active lifestyle. Finland’s role within the World Health Organization is not large nor significant, but we have taken part in many important research projects including the WHO MONICA project, where the deaths caused by cardiovascular diseases were measured in different populations of nations. In addition, the Republic of Finland has an active role in advancing the health security of not only themselves, but that of many other nations as well, creating an international evaluation procedure. Topic 1 – Mitochondrial transfer and three-parent babies Mitochondrial transfer is the process that involves using the DNA of three people through in-vitro fertilization to create an offspring. The transfer involves the two forms of DNA that we have in our body, nuclear DNA (nDNA) and mitochondrial DNA (mDNA). However, with this procedure comes disadvantages that may prove to be detrimental to the baby, as the effects on the health of the offspring are not yet fully understood. One thing for sure is that the genetics of the baby undergo permanent modification. The World Health Organization is faced with the challenge of deciding whether this process is ethical or not and whether the DNA should be treated differently. A child conceived with three parents will carry the nuclear DNA(nDNA) of the two parents and the mitochondrial DNA(mDNA) of the second women who has donated her mitochondria. A woman may choose to use this technique if they have mitochondrial DNA that is defective and would not want to pass down mutant genomes to her child. Therefore, all of the nuclear genes within the offspring are that of its parents, while the the 37 genese of the mitochondrial genome is that of the donor. This produces a baby with three-parents, but their contributions are not equal. The mutant genome will still be present in the offspring, but the its presence has been significantly decreased. Presently, work is being done to insure that mitochondrial replacement transfer will prove to be beneficial and efficient. One method would be to match the mitochondrial genes of the donor with that of the mother to ensure a positive result. Another method would be to completely eliminate mutant genomes to guarantee that they will not be present in future generations. To further develop this form of producing offspring, more knowledge in the area of mitochondria genes must be known, before any adjustments can be made to the current process. Due to the fact that mitochondrial transfer and three-parent babies is a relatively new method, Finland currently does not have any policy or regulation regarding mitochondrial transfer. Genetic testing within Finland has no strict guidelines, but it is monitored by the state to ensure safety. The use of selective fetal reduction is not allowed for twin pregnancies in Finland. Therefore, in order to transfer two embryos, they must be done at separate time than together and there is now more pressure to reduce the risk of twins. The other regulations are not as specific, one of the being the Gene Technology Act (1995), in which it promotes the safe and ethical use of this form of technology. This act ensures that no human, animal, or the environment is affected in the process. DNA testing is also allowed in certain situations, such as when it is a serious crime or in cases of family ties. From this, we are provided with sufficient evidence to assume that Finland would support mitochondrial transfer and three-parent babies, if this process is monitored and supervised by the government. As well, if this transfer does not infringe on the rights, particularly their health, of other Finnish citizens, it would be appropriate to perform. Finland has and is currently working on developing their research in the area of medical genetics and are willing to collaborate with others to do so. Topic 2 – The question of mandatory vaccinationsWith the recent outbreaks of many diseases, vaccinations have ensured that the lives of many are saved and the number of lives lost decreases. The World Health Organization has been working with fellow scientists and policymakers to further develop the manufacturing, testing, and regulatory oversight of all vaccinations. The national immunization program (NIP) has been extremely effective in that there has been a large response to vaccination coverage and parental confidence. Currently, the citizens of Finland are not required to follow a mandatory vaccination policy, for all vaccines are funded from the national government’s budget. Vaccines are given at a voluntary basis and are free of charge. Due to this intensive vaccination program, many infectious diseases and the their effects have either completely or almost disappeared out of Finland. The vaccination programme for children and adolescents include eleven different types of immunizations. Finnish children are vaccinated against nine infectious diseases and those at risk to certain diseases are given hepatitis, A and B vaccines and BCG vaccines. They are given the opportunity to not only be prevented from these diseases but their sequelae and any complications that may occur. Research done, shows that children born in 2001, by the age of 2, 95% of children has received their vaccinations. Each vaccination separately, rises to 97%. The vaccination programme for adults offers four different vaccinations. dT, IPV, MMR, and influenza vaccine for those over the age of 65. Adults must make sure that they have at least received the basic level of vaccinations for tetanus, diphtheria, and polio. As well, technology plays a significant role in the immunization program in Finland, as all changes and instructions are communicated to the public through several different platforms by the National Public Health Institute(KTL). The National Public Health Institute works to ensure that all citizens in Finland are protected to the best of their capabilities from infectious diseases. All of the information regarding what vaccinations are provided, descriptions of them and any other significant details. In 1982, a vaccination program that contained measles, mumps, and rubella, was put into effect. This program was put into action due to the low vaccination coverage in Finland to reduce measles. Since the mid 1990s, no cases of domestic transmission of these three disease have been identified. Finland became the first country to eliminate measles through this immunization programme. However, measles is not the only contagious disease that has been reduced in Finland. Swine flu and pertussis have also been significantly reduced. Tuberculosis, tetanus, mumps and diphtheria have all received high immunization coverage, going to as high as 99% of the population. The current implementation of the immunization programme in Finland has been extremely effective. Therefore, the need to implicate a mandatory vaccination policy would not be necessary, as the people there are willing to receive their immunization without any legislations necessary to push them to do so. The National Public Health Institute is continuing their efforts to ensure that each citizen will continue to receive their vaccinations and that any contagious diseases will not prove to be of a significant threat in Finland. ConclusionThough Finland is a small country in terms of size and population, its contribution to the World Health Organization and to the development of new methods and techniques. Their contributions have not only assisted themselves, but many other countries as well. The role they have embodied ensures that the research and development in new areas is being used to the advantage of many. Finland has worked hard to ensure that every Finnish citizen is provided with the best quality of healthcare and given access to all necessary services. Genetic modification is an area that still requires more discussion and research in Finland before any specific regulations can be created. Due to the fact that there are no specific guidelines regarding genetic testing, Finland would most likely support mitochondrial transfer and three-parent babies, as long as it does not infringe on the health of the Finnish people. The national immunization program has proved to be beneficial and effective, with the high percentage rate of people receiving their vaccinations. This has ensured that contagious diseases have not been able to be detrimental towards the Finnish population. Finland will continue to strive to safeguard its citizens from diseases, to create a higher quality of life. They are open for improvements and developments to ensure that the overall health within the country is the best.