My name is Eva-Maria Asukas. I am a 32-year-old nurse and physical therapist. I am running for parliament in the 2023 election on the Social Democratic Party of Finland’s candidate list in the Helsinki constituency.
I am currently employed as a psychiatric nurse at the Finnish Student Health Service’s Töölö service unit. Before this, I have worked as a nurse at various acute and outpatient departments of the Aurora Hospital and at the Malmi Psychiatric Outpatient Clinic. As a physical therapist, I have the most experience in geriatric physical therapy.
I grew up in a working family in Lieto. My parents taught me to value work and family. Living in Lieto also taught me the importance of nature. As a child, I played on fields and in forests and climbed trees. Nature has remained an important part of my life and I appreciate nature and its importance. My values are equality, justice, goodness, and respect for nature. My characteristics include a desire to stand up for the weak, both in my own life as well as in politics. I became interested in influencing while serving on the board of the Finnish Epilepsy Association in Turku. I felt and still feel that supporting people with epilepsy is very important. At that time, I thought that I would also like to defend functioning specialist healthcare services in Finland, and I began my nursing studies in order to get to know them better. While becoming a nurse, I wanted to stand up for the work that nurses do and I got involved in the activities of the Union of Health and Social Care Professionals in Finland, Tehy. While at Tehy, I started to put together the things that I want to defend: nursing work, specialist healthcare, mental health, patient associations, and services for the elderly. This resulted in the decision to get involved in politics, which had been simmering in the back of my mind for a long time.
After moving to Helsinki, I consequently joined the board of the Oulunkylä branch of the Social Democratic Party and took part in the 2021 municipal elections as a candidate. The result of the municipal election was a position of trust on the committee of the Helsinki University Hospital District, which provided me with a wealth of knowledge about specialist healthcare. I decided to become a candidate in the parliamentary elections because I want to stand up for things that are legislated there.
I am in politics because I want to create opportunities for living a good life. I want to raise grievances and give a voice to those who cannot be heard otherwise. My election themes include developing public mental health services. By supporting people’s mental health, we will have a population of Finns who feel and work better and who belong to happier families. Everyone deserves the chance to get a fresh start and to have a better future. My other election theme is the redirection and development of services for the elderly. The service crisis resulting from the ageing population can be resolved. Quality of life is secured with a network of various entities and services. By redirecting and developing these existing services, it is possible to save both human and financial capital and to facilitate a personally satisfying old age for everyone.
My third election theme is securing public healthcare during the health and social services reform. As wellbeing services counties begin operating in specialist healthcare, the facilitation of care and the shortening of queues need to be in focus. This must however take place in a way that does not put an undue burden on healthcare personnel. Basic healthcare is the foundation of public healthcare. Basic healthcare services impact people all the way from maternity and child health clinics to memory services. It is possible to detect the early stages of illness in basic healthcare services and to take care of the required follow-ups and everyday support. Faster access to mental health services at the basic level. Earlier treatment start and diagnosis prevents the loss of functional capabilities. Free access to healthcare enables equitable health services.