Tokyo reports 1,502 new cases of COVID-19 as feared ‘explosive expansion’

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Tokyo reported 1,502 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, with the number of critically ill patients remaining at a high level, straining the capital’s medical system.

The number of severe cases fell to 135, down six from the previous day, while cases among people aged 65 or older, who are likely to develop more severe symptoms, stood at 202.

Thursday’s figures came after 3,849 tests were performed on Monday, a low number of tests due to coming of age day. The latest count brings the cumulative total for the capital to 80,068.

At a coronavirus meeting held at the Tokyo Metropolitan Government the same day, members of an expert panel said the recent increase in cases in which routes of infection cannot be traced indicates an “expansion explosive ‘infections.

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New cases are being discovered every day at an unprecedented rate, the panel warned, urging the metropolitan government to take effective action immediately.

“It is very important to reduce the number of new cases and seriously ill patients in order to avoid the collapse” of the medical system, they said.

The cumulative total of nationally confirmed cases exceeded 300,000 on Wednesday, the day the country extended the state of emergency initially declared for the Tokyo metropolitan area last week to several other prefectures.

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According to a Kyodo News tally, the national cumulative total passed 100,000 on October 29 and reached 200,000 almost two months later on December 21. It only took about three weeks for the cumulative total to hit the 300,000 mark.

In addition to Tokyo, which confirmed a record 2,447 new infections on January 7, other prefectures with huge urban populations, including Osaka and Aichi, are also facing a sudden surge in numbers since the start of the war. year.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on Wednesday declared seven more prefectures under a state of emergency.

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Coronavirus deaths across the country topped 4,000 as of January 9, with up to 70 deaths a day recently. People with severe symptoms hit a high of 900, 19 more than the day before.

The outbreak has increased pressure on the country’s medical system, with some hospitals already forced to turn away patients.

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