COVID-19 infections reach record high in Tokyo day after state of emergency declared
Japan’s health ministry and local governments said that 309 new daily COVID-19 infections were recorded nationwide as of 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, bringing the national total to 4,768 cases, with Tokyo recording a new daily record of 144 cases.
The rise in cases across Japan and another significant spike in Tokyo, the epicenter of the nation’s pandemic, comes on the heels of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe declaring a state of emergency over the pandemic situation here a day earlier.
The emergency declaration made Tuesday covers the capital and other major prefectures, including Kanagawa, Saitama, Chiba, Osaka, Hyogo and Fukuoka. Along with Tokyo, which has seen COVID-19 cases rise exponentially compared to Japan’s other prefectures, Osaka Prefecture’s rising cases have also caused particular concern to prefectural officials and healthcare authorities.
The death toll in Japan from the pneumonia-causing virus currently stands at a total of 109 people, according to the health ministry, with the figure including those from the virus-hit Diamond Princess cruise ship that was quarantined in Yokohama, close to Tokyo.
Of the 4,768 confirmed COVID-19 infections in Japan, the majority are still in Japan’s capital city of Tokyo, which confirmed 1,339 cases as of Tuesday evening, followed by Osaka Prefecture which has recorded 481 COVID-19 cases. Kanagawa Prefecture, meanwhile, has 332 cases, Chiba Prefecture 307 infections, while the number of cases in Aichi Prefecture currently stands at 260 cases, according to the latest figures.
The health ministry also said there are currently a total of 88 patients considered severely ill and are on ventilators to receive respiratory assistance or have been admitted to intensive care units for medical treatment. The ministry added that in total, 1,242 people have been discharged from hospitals after their symptoms improved, according to the latest figures.