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COVID-19 cases plummeting in Japan; doctors puzzled why

92 Comments
By SoraNews24

There’s an old saying that it’s always darkest before the dawn, and sure enough after Japan’s most infectious wave of COVID-19 infections by far, we’ve been given an unexpected respite. However, why this is and how long it will last remain to be seen.

Around mid-to-late July cases began to skyrocket from about 3,000 a day to roughly 25,000 per day by around late August. However, just as fast as it shot up, the number of new cases took a nosedive to 549 on Oct 10, amounting to a 98 percent decrease in about a month.

▼ Number of daily new cases in Japan during 2021

casegraph-e163401105.jpg

Not only is that a staggering drop, but the current rate of daily new cases is the lowest its been in all of 2021. Upon hearing this news, the cynical parts of us will undoubtedly assume that Japan just stopped testing as much, however, even by the metric of testing rates we’re still seeing record lows.

Despite the 98 percent drop in cases, there has only been a 45 percent decrease in PCR tests taken. Furthermore, among those tests the rate of positive results slid from about 17 percent to 1.2 percent, which is a 93 percent decrease and once again a record low for 2021.

▼ The dark green line represents the Number of PCR Tests in Japan (7-Day Average). The light green line represents the Percentage of Positive Test Results (7-Day Average) multiplied by 10,000 so the different rates of change can be more easily seen.

testinggraph.jpg

So, now that COVID-19 certainly appears to be waning fast in Japan, the question is: What did we do to accomplish this?

Well, we don’t know…

The truth of the matter is that from the beginning of this slide in cases until now, there hadn’t been any major change in behavior or policy in the country. Although there was a state of emergency in place for much of the year, it was a far cry from the lockdowns enacted in other countries and didn’t disrupt daily life for many people. Given the timing, a case could be made that the Olympics led to the last explosive wave, but that still wouldn’t explain how it evaporated so quickly.

Although Japan was off to a really slow start compared to other developed countries, the vaccination rate has been steadily on the rise and currently about 64 percent of the population is fully vaccinated. However, the rate has been very steady and no significant changes occurred during the period of the nosedive in cases – unless crossing a threshold of 43 percent of the population becoming fully vaccinated is somehow especially effective at curbing COVID-19.

▼ Percentage of fully-vaccinated people in Japan

vaccination-graph.jpg

Doctor and medical journalist Yutaka Morita appeared on television to speak about the drop in cases and said that among the other medical professionals he spoke to, about half attributed it to vaccinations and the other half simply had no idea. Morita concluded that we may ultimately never know why this happened.

Readers of the news online also had a mixture of opinions on the matter with some also concluding that we simply might not have the ability to understand why right now.

“No matter how much we think about it, it might simply be beyond modern science’s understanding.”

“I wonder if all the people who were destined to get COVID-19 from their unsafe behavior already have.”

“Who cares? It’s going down and that’s all that counts.”

“I really hope this is the end.”

“I wonder if maybe we’ve been wrong about the cause of infection this whole time too.”

“I hope they find out why this happened in time for the next wave.”

“It sounds like the Olympics are far enough behind us now.”

“Looking at other countries, only Japan seems to have dropped so fast. It’s strange.”

“It’s probably because of the vaccines, but I wonder if it’s also possible that the virus mutated into something that PCR tests can’t detect.”

“Either way, it’s good news. I hope normal life will returns soon, especially now that I understand how precious it is.”

As far as the reasons for this recent trend, the only thing we can be sure of is that Japan’s COVID-19 contact tracing app was absolutely not responsible to slowing the infection rate at all. So until we learn more, we guess the best advice for anyone living in Japan is to keep doing whatever you’ve been doing since Aug 27 because it appears to be working.

Source: Daily Sports via Hachima Kiko

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

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-- COVID-19 appears to be suppressing the flu in Japan, number of cases down and decreasing

-- New COVID-19 delta variant discovered in Japan, believed to be domestically mutated

© SoraNews24

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

92 Comments

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It seems a variety if factors are probably at work, but I would guess that in simple terms the combination of most people now being vaccinated plus the behavior people were following here all along (wearing masks everywhere, etc) is doing a really good job of suppressing the spread of Covid.

29 ( +41 / -12 )

Someone is manipulating the numbers by finding ways to avoid not recording all the infections on official records.

Private clinics that are easily accessible but expensive are not counted. Government counted infection centers make it hard to get a test. You have to be really be sick then they won't accept patients because of not enough beds and make people stay home for a quarantine periods. Those home-based infections are not counted because they were never technically admitted into the hospital. Once again, not counted on the official records.

You are welcome!

-19 ( +26 / -45 )

doctors puzzled why” … about half attributed it to vaccinations and the other half simply had no idea…

- “What did we do to accomplish this?

Well, we don’t know…” -

concluded that we may ultimately never know why [be explained how] this happened.

-8 ( +6 / -14 )

COVID-19 cases plummeting in Japan.

Great news!

24 ( +32 / -8 )

doctors puzzled why

Which proves that experts don't know everything.

We should respect them, but not necessarily blindly follow.

29 ( +44 / -15 )

If I'm not mistaken the same thing occurred in India following it's terrible bout with the Delta variant. They went from thousands of cases a day down to a very low number and it had nothing to do with vaccines as they weren't able to administer them the way Japan has.

21 ( +27 / -6 )

Modern science is not at a point where they can even analyze why and whats happening?

Thats a rather unusual amount of honesty from an official source.

Whats going on here?

22 ( +25 / -3 )

"there has only been a 45 percent decrease in PCR tests". That's almost half the testing. Seems like a pretty significant red flag to me.

6 ( +26 / -20 )

I just hope this nightmare ends.

25 ( +26 / -1 )

For those who survive the vaccines, they are relatively effective for 2~3 months. After that, it seems vaccinated people are more susceptible to infection. If the trend seen in Singapore, Israel, USA and etc holds here, this winter is going to be carnage.

-33 ( +18 / -51 )

Fully vaccinated have a 90% chance of not being infected with the virus and are unlikely to be hospitalized for treatment. The same can be said about the unvaccinated who continue to be the largest group of victims. Vaccines are working, without a doubt.

7 ( +27 / -20 )

I can explain it... temporary Herd Immunity of around 20% - 30% of the population and vaccine immunity from 64%

Not everybody in Japan who got covid had serious symptoms so they never got tested.

16 ( +25 / -9 )

there has only been a 45 percent decrease in PCR tests". That's almost half the testing. Seems like a pretty significant red flag to me.

exactly! you beat me to it!

-1 ( +19 / -20 )

Upon hearing this news, the stupid among us will undoubtedly assume that Japan just stopped testing as much

Glad they cleared that up

3 ( +12 / -9 )

Do 1,000,000,000 tests and see how many COVID cases...then there will be news to report.

-12 ( +11 / -23 )

It can't be the vaccination rate alone.

Singapore is 80+% vaccinated, but still battling a much higher case count with much more restrictions than here. Also people there wearing masks since they are fined if they don't.

I go with some government manipulation of the data in time for the elections.

4 ( +28 / -24 )

My guess is that the first wave of Covid-19 back in 2020 took out much of the "low hanging fruit" and from there, it continued to spread and infect people in numbers that slowly built up herd immunity. Vaccines helped, but the Delta variant, which spreads easier, accelerated herd immunity and took out any remaining fruit out there. Thats my theory.

11 ( +16 / -5 )

For those who survive the vaccines, they are relatively effective for 2~3 months. After that, it seems vaccinated people are more susceptible to infection. If the trend seen in Singapore, Israel, USA and etc holds here, this winter is going to be carnage.

Same lies, same poster, different day.

-2 ( +19 / -21 )

MagnetToday  07:23 am JST

"there has only been a 45 percent decrease in PCR tests". That's almost half the testing. Seems like a pretty significant red flag to me.

PCR tests will decrease drastically if so few people have Covid symptoms. It isn't so hard to figure that out.

8 ( +20 / -12 )

For those who survive the vaccines, they are relatively effective for 2~3 months. After that, it seems vaccinated people are more susceptible to infection. If the trend seen in Singapore, Israel, USA and etc holds here, this winter is going to be carnage.

Another nostradumass.

1 ( +15 / -14 )

As widely reported the Olympics was clearly a superspreader event and now with it being over the numbers are dropping dramatically. This is obvious. One factor that is hard to measure is the behavior of local people during the Olympics when they see tens of thousands of foreigners let into the country and not monitored for six weeks leading to the conclusion that the Tokyo and national governments were not following science, so why should individuals in Japan follow science either. The Olympics gave non-compliers an huge excuse to not care about safety protocols. Now we are back to normal and the ever present peer pressure in Japan is in full effect. The Olympics were a gold metal disaster for the country.

-9 ( +7 / -16 )

Which proves that experts don't know everything.

We should respect them, but not necessarily blindly follow.

There is a poster here who doesn't want to hear that.

A poster who completely blindly follow everything what the so called experts are saying.

-8 ( +12 / -20 )

Do 1,000,000,000 tests and see how many COVID cases...then there will be news to report.

If sampling is done properly you don't have to test that much, just a tiny fraction, and results would apply to the whole population

6 ( +9 / -3 )

 One factor that is hard to measure is the behavior of local people during the Olympics when they see tens of thousands of foreigners let into the country and not monitored for six weeks leading to the conclusion that the Tokyo and national governments were not following science, so why should individuals in Japan follow science either. The Olympics gave non-compliers an huge excuse to not care about safety protocols.

That's nonsense. I live in a very central area of Tokyo, and there has been 0 observable change in the behavior people prior the Olympics, during, or now.

Also, the Olympics was a non-event, there were barely any more foreigners around. I very much doubt that the Olympics was a super-spreader event.

8 ( +20 / -12 )

there has only been a 45 percent decrease in PCR tests". That's almost half the testing. Seems like a pretty significant red flag to me.

exactly! you beat me to it!

and  vaccination rate at 73% that is a bigger green flag.

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

"As widely reported the Olympics was clearly a superspreader event"

?????? which report? Link please.

8 ( +19 / -11 )

That's right around the time when non-elderly became eligible for vaccination. Since only those with bad symptoms would actually get tested, the vaccine would greatly reduce the number of tests. Younger people who started the wave to begin with would be going back to school and not going around getting sick. To say there was no change in behavior is laughable considering the timing. Maybe they don't have the right data, but kids going back to school would definitely change the behavior of countless people.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I go with some government manipulation of the data in time for the elections.

but they would tell the whole they were avging 25,000 cases during the Games but manipulate the data for the elections, that regardless of Covid 19 would still win?

0 ( +6 / -6 )

There is nothing stange about what happen. Look at the UK and the US, the same thing happen.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

▼ Number of daily new cases in Japan during 2021

That blue graph.............yeah, so around the Olympics time. Big mystery. Also hiding real numbers.

COVID-19 cases plummeting in Japan; doctors puzzled why

And yeah.............it's pretty obvious that vaccines have a little something to do with it.

Who wrote this thing?

1 ( +7 / -6 )

and vaccination rate at 73% that is a bigger green flag.

other countries like Canada have a higher vaccination rate and yet are experiencing a new wave.

Explain that

5 ( +15 / -10 )

Natural immunity!

So many of the population have already had asymptomatic or mild symptoms and have achieved natural immunity. Half of them probably don't even know they have had covid! The rest have short term immunity from the vaccines.

Open up, move on!

-6 ( +11 / -17 )

I go with some government manipulation of the data in time for the elections.

I agree

5 ( +16 / -11 )

At this point i ain't gonna complain about the drop in cases. Good news is always better than bad news especially with winter coming.

You could even say we have already adapted to this whole crazy situation.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Could viral error catastrophe have anything to do with it?

Also, didn't something similar take place in India?

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

"Only 45% decrease"

Okay JT..thanks for the great analysis and awesome reporting

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Because all of the draconian measures work.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

on the other hand: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/oct/13/back-from-the-brink-how-japan-became-a-surprise-covid-success-story

1 ( +3 / -2 )

COVID-19 cases plummeting in Japan; doctors puzzled why

Because there's an election coming up.

7 ( +19 / -12 )

Pukey2 RIght on the money!!

3 ( +13 / -10 )

Isn't it obvious? 77% of the eligible population vaccinated and the rest of us who couldn't be bother with either the vaccine or precautions got it already and either have natural immunity or became ashes.

3 ( +12 / -9 )

Seems there are geniuses here who believe Suga engineered his own downfall

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

So many of the population have already had asymptomatic or mild symptoms and have achieved natural immunity... . The rest have short term immunity from the vaccines.

Natural (more accurately; post-infection) immunity is also short term. And less robust.

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

Interesting that they don't want to consider herd immunity. After all, if there was no threat of COVID, what would the medical community and politicians do?

Before Delta, trend in the U.S. followed the same pattern- steep rise followed by steep decline. I'm guessing a combination of community spread and vaccines kicking in ushered in herd immunity. Plus Japan, with a healthier population, likely has fewer people to infect.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

Doctors may be puzzled, but that's clearly because they don't take advantage of the experts here in JT comments, who have all the answers.

8 ( +17 / -9 )

Number of cases is irrelevant in countries that have high vaccination status. The only metric to watch moving forward is the hospitalization rate of serious cases. Many people will get it and not even know it so unless you have mast required testing of people without symptoms it will become the new cold/ flu.

Take off your masks and live life.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

The answer: The vaccination rate is close to 70%. It's been touted all along and this is the result. Almost a 100% mask wearing rate too.

Get the vaccination over 90% and we'll be home free.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

I go with some government manipulation of the data in time for the elections.

You said the same thing when the Olympics were approaching. But why reduce the numbers so drastically to make them unbelievable?! If the govt were manipulating the data, wouldn't they make it a gradual decrease?! Instead the numbers are plunging. The govt is smart enough to manipulate the data but so stupid that they would make it unbelievable. Does that make sense? Smfdfh

4 ( +9 / -5 )

https://www.science.org/lookup/doi/10.1126/science.abh1823

this paper from october 8th shows how in some people the immune response to sars cov-2 was through an already existing pathway meaning that a previous infection to the cold/flu/coronavirus had already conferred some form of natural immunity. the preexisting cross-reactive CD4+ T cells reduced severity of symptoms and the same pathway was activated in people who received the vaccination. 

the study also found that the pathway decreases with age so older individuals who may have once had immunity could have lost it as a result of aging. 

it's possible that a prior virus had run through the japanese population years ago and natural immunity has persisted. i recall a while ago reading about people who recovered from SARS in 2003 continuing to have immunity in 2020 to both Cov-1 and Cov-2, so this new study is just more information to add to the pile.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

I don't see it as a this or that scenario. Perhaps there are a number of factors contributing to this statistical anomaly. Reluctance to get tested, herd immunity achieved via infections and vaccinations. There might be some bean counter somewhere either making mistakes or deliberately being mischievous. Check that spreadsheet formula! I'm still skeptical of the extremely rapid drop in numbers but very happily wrong if the figures are true.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Seems there are geniuses here who believe Suga engineered his own downfall

Exactly. And tell the world during the Olympics that Japan had 25,000 cases a day. If you were going to cook the numbers would you not cook the books before the Olympics?

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Are these numbers and stats coming from government officials? if so then they are completely useless.

We do well know how the LDP masqueraded and twisted the real tests and infected with very low tests and slow vaccination.

The same government that in the middle of a pandemic started a GoTo wathever.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Which proves that experts don't know everything.

We should respect them, but not necessarily blindly follow.

Experts have speculated several reasons for the bigger than expected drop, what they have not is the necessary studies to corroborate how important are each of those reasons. Now knowing absolutely everything instantly do not mean that those things that are actually known have no value. If you have to choose what to do it is always better to follow the advice that have something behind it than just the advice you want to hear.

Modern science is not at a point where they can even analyze why and whats happening?

Yes it is, but not instantaneously, which is an expectation ouside of reality.

a poster who completely blindly follow everything what the so called experts are saying.

When opposed to automatically do the opposite of what the experts (and their evidence) say this is not such a bad position. The fortunate thing about science is that it is continously self correcting, while being antiscientific is simply much more likely to remain mistaken precisely because it accepts no such thing is possible.

So many of the population have already had asymptomatic or mild symptoms and have achieved natural immunity. 

How many, as in some objective evidence of the number, just assuming something you want to believe would make you no different from the people that have endlessly predicte Japan has herd immunity since summer... of last year.

Many reasons have been proposed and are likely to be correct, but the scientific position is not to say something "is" until objective evidence is available to prove it, epidemiologists know that herd immunity is not some kind of clear cutt off value that applies the same to every population, so things can elevate it (like the appearance of variants) while others decrease it (like everybody using masks). Vaccinations and the behavior of most of the population have of course contributed to this important drop of cases, maybe the biased testing is also important (since asymptomatic people are not tested by design), but it is very important to remember the seasonality and the possible elevation that is expected from now on.

-2 ( +11 / -13 )

When I went through Handeda airport, there were hundreds of passengers using the airport for international arrivals even at the highest point of "infection" rate. For example, at least three planes a day from the US to Haneda that I could count. I'm guessing the same or similar situation was also taking place at Narita, less so in other Japanese "international" airports. This in total adds up to probably several hundreds or even a thousand or more guaranteed "negative" test takers (forced into mandatory tests upon arrival.)

Now, if these "tourists" (the vast majority of whom were Japanese, by the way) had their "negative COVID tests" counted by the government and thereby added into the total "daily national" totals, then I could imagine these tests would make up a significant proportion of the daily "negative" results (and at no worry to the Japanese government, since everyone, bar none, had already provided proof of a negative test taken within the previous 72 hours.)

Adding several hundred "tourists'" negative tests into the already rather low numbers of domestic daily COVID tests would certainly spike the results, don't you think?

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Put simple, Canada didn't have a higher rate.

Yes it did

COVID-19 pandemic by country and territory - Wikipedia

look at this graph

it tells us that Canada's vaccination percentage is at 77.3%

Japan's is at 74.6%

>

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

Are these numbers and stats coming from government officials? if so then they are completely useless.

We do well know how the LDP masqueraded and twisted the real tests and infected with very low tests and slow vaccination.

The same government that in the middle of a pandemic started a GoTo wathever.

exactly! well said William!

1 ( +7 / -6 )

"COVID-19 cases plummeting in Japan; doctors puzzled why"

Faulty PCR test to begin with

""there has only been a 45 percent decrease in PCR tests"

Pretty significant. There you go

0 ( +10 / -10 )

Went to Tokyo on Tuesday to see a movie with a friend, after that went to Asakusa to go to a specific shop: train at 20% of normal passenger usage, low level of people in the streets (it was a rainy day though), everybody with masks and trying to keep distance, nobody talking, disinfectant at the entrance of shops / cafes / restaurants, digital temperature check when entering the cinema.

Long story short: people do seem to get the message to pay attention and try to avoid getting infected. Does it mean we can do without all of the above? Nope! Reason being that all of the above contributes to a safer environment.

On the government-side...

*Despite the 98 percent drop in cases, there has only been a 45 percent decrease in PCR tests taken. Furthermore, among those tests the rate of positive results slid from about 17 percent to 1.2 percent, which is a 93 percent decrease and once again a record low for 2021.*

...Well, PCR testing was peanuts from day one onwards. If you reduce the number of peanuts but pretty much half, one would expect at least around a similar reduction in results, no?

Long story short: the government has to continue to focus on vaccinations. If (currently) 74.3% of the population got a first vaccination, we should be able to fully vaccinate at least so many. The more, the better.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

 have learned one thing. And that is there is no point saying anything negative about antivaxxers here at JT!

The reason is that moderators here are antivaxxers and will remove posts that are critical of antivexxers siting either Off-topic or Offensive / Vulgar

It is a disgraceful behavior which spreads negative information about vaccines and masks!!!!!!!!!!!

Get a clue already, there is no discussion if it's only coming from one side.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

It is the vaccines, the masks , the mindo, the lack of hospitals , the fear of death I think everything contributed nicely here

0 ( +6 / -6 )

If doctors do not know, how could we know...

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Are these numbers and stats coming from government officials? if so then they are completely useless.

and you were not writing that in August, when there were 25,000 cases a day. Were you? You were not writing that when government stats were showing the number of severe cases were a record high in August. Were you?

When the stats are bad you believe them. When the stats are good you don't believe them. Interesting logic.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

@Ingvar

Interesting point about Singapore, Israel, and U.S. experiencing a spike in cases after their vaccination drives.

One BIG difference, however, is that Japan has already seemingly experienced the "delta spike". It hit in the midst of their vaccination drive.

If Japan experiences another spike, vaccines, not variants, will indeed be scrutinized closely as the cause.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

Yea, strictly manipulated since the increase of shots lead to the huge increase of cases. Cities are closing their Jab shots now so everyone who wanted the shot got it and those who won’t are firm in their position. But I am skeptical about the supposed freedoms the shot takes will enjoy. I have a feeling it may be only temporary. Also, you all that believe things will go back to normal forgot that Japan used to advertise the new normal on trucks driving through the city. Naive people at their finest.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Japans testing levels have been consistantly low. I never thought the figures were particularly accurate.

But its great if the rates are dropping. Winter will be interesting.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Could it be more people are “Staying Home” or at least minimal inter-human contact

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Faulty PCR test to begin with

There is nothing wrong with the tests, specificity and sensitivity levels both above 99%,

If Japan experiences another spike, vaccines, not variants, will indeed be scrutinized closely as the cause.

Vaccines do not make people more susceptible to the infection, the opposite, even months after vaccination the worst case scenario is just going back to the same susceptibility as non-vaccinated people, never more. This is a false argument used by antivaxxer groups that take only a bit of the information and put it in a completely invalid context to make it seem as if this was the case, even when it proves the opposite.

-1 ( +12 / -13 )

Every variant seems to follow the same pattern, more or less regardless of what people do. I've often mentioned the Israel and nearby Jordan. Both countries used to follow very similar patterns despite their very different vaccination rates. And lately, heavily vaccinated Israel has had another major peak, but not Jordan!

Vaccinations probably have some effect, but I believe natural immunity is more important. Many more people have recovered from it than we think, and many people also have some level of natural immunity acquired prior to the appearance of SARSCoV2.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

So many of the population have already had asymptomatic or mild symptoms and have achieved natural immunity.

man stfu stop spreading BS lies, Japan has had around 1.8 million infected in a population of 127million.

Infinite wisdom is not needed to understand this. It's quite simple really.

We have 1.7 million PCR-confirmed infections. The actual infection rate is much higher. I suspect at least 10X higher, perhaps even much higher than that...

0 ( +8 / -8 )

I heard a guy saying it’s cos we the Japanese are unique. Nearly bit my tongue off!

5 ( +10 / -5 )

“There is nothing wrong with the tests, specificity and sensitivity levels both above 99%,”

Yes there is, with my false positives and negatives. 70 percent accuracy roughly. As always, the fact-checkers are all over it though

-7 ( +5 / -12 )

Infinite wisdom is not needed to understand this. It's quite simple really.

We have 1.7 million PCR-confirmed infections. The actual infection rate is much higher. I suspect at least 10X higher, perhaps even much higher than that...

Serology tests done last December puts the number of positives at

0.91 % Tokyo

0.58% Osaka

0.14% Miyagi

0.54% Aichi

0.19% Fukuoka

That's 10months ago so everyone's free to speculate on the numbers now.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

So many medical experts here. So much speculation.

https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20210922/p2a/00m/0na/017000c

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

They are all still out there and within your body, but now in form of an under-the-radar mutated escape strain variant. Compare it with those twenty years of Taliban invisible in mountain caves. You know that they managed to return even stronger and more complete, and similarly such little virus beasts soon will.

-9 ( +0 / -9 )

And yet COVID cases in the U.K. are currently running at ~35,000 per day. What accounts for that difference? Are the Brits wholly unsanitary?

I say hogwash. The difference in COVID rates is entirely down to the politics of the countries in question.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

They are all still out there and within your body, but now in form of an under-the-radar mutated escape strain variant. Compare it with those twenty years of Taliban invisible in mountain caves. You know that they managed to return even stronger and more complete, and similarly such little virus beasts soon will.

Uh oh. Hear that everybody? A mutated escape strain variant!! We're doomed!

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

I say hogwash. The difference in COVID rates is entirely down to the politics of the countries in question.

What about number of deaths? Same thing?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Reported cases are lower because the election is coming up. Zero scientific reasons needed.

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

How is the testing rate?

One factor I think is that since most people received their vaccinations in late August and September, we are in the sweet spot of immunity. Unfortunately, immunity will wane for the elderly in the coming months. If we do not continue basic precautions (masking the nose), we may possibly see a rebound after the election.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Thank you.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japan is probably the only advanced economy where individuals have to pay to get a COVID test done! Who in their right mind would want to get a test done.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

We have 1.7 million PCR-confirmed infections. The actual infection rate is much higher. I suspect at least 10X higher, perhaps even much higher than that...

Nobody has the information to make an accurate determination of how many cases Japan have had, you have continously predicted herd immunity reached since more than a year ago, what evidence you have to say this is not just another time where you are mistaken?

Yes there is, with my false positives and negatives. 70 percent accuracy roughly. As always, the fact-checkers are all over it though

What are your "false positive and negatives" and how they compare with the tens of thousands of tests being used to say exactly the opposite of what you say? are we supposed to just trust that you can prove as wrong the professionals that determine how reliable tests are for a living? that is not realistic. Present your data and that would be different.

Every variant seems to follow the same pattern, more or less regardless of what people do. 

Not really, some variants fail to become predominant, others distribute along each other in similar numbers, others simply disappear (especially when they compete with Delta for example), this also depend very strongly on what is being done in each place, with whole countries having reduced spreading or even skipping some variants thanks to social distancing measures, vaccination, etc.

Vaccinations probably have some effect, but I believe natural immunity is more important. 

Since the experts contradict you very clearly, and you have been repeatedly mistaken before these would be reasons to be on the side of science also this time.

0 ( +11 / -11 )

Yeah I'll buy the anonymous reports, the faceless nameless 'experts' HAHAHA, my so called dog

he's an expert sharpshooter, I can point to tree trunks or phone poles and he'll never miss ever.

We know these are funny figures. Olympics, weekends, game delays, votes, massages. OH Oh Vote for me! i'll make life of sunshine rainbows and free markets. What covid? Poof and it's gone. Just like magic from the hat.

Abracadabra Looters Dont pay! May the free-loading go on!

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Next week definitely single figures for Tokyo and nationwide under 500..Banzai.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

You can't explain anything with partial data.

From the beginning, Japan produces untransparent, incomplete, irregular data.

The decentralized, privated heath system add to the confusion reporting unverified numbers.

No surprise nobody understand the situation.

Remember may 2020 : "the japanese model has defeated the coronavirus" (Abe) ...

0 ( +5 / -5 )

@magnet

If people aren't getting sick and aren't being around people with corona then one would expect testing to also decrease. Especially if the test costs 20,000 yen.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Japan got off to a slow start but now has one of the highest vaccination rates in the world. That together with social distancing and masking.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

It 'decreased' to get the Olympics and now we have an election soonish.

Ironic timing on both counts.

So predictable.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

I say make testing free and mandatory. Get to the bottom of it once and for all.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

The magic of Kishida-san!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The Olympics!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

COVID-19 cases plummeting in Japan; doctors puzzled why

....because it is a virus epidemic, they always go this way. I suppose they are also puzzled why the Spanish Flu, H1N1, swine flu, MERS, etc. "went away".

A fair speculation is that a lot of the hysterical government decisions like restricted business hours, closing of sports facilities, and advising people to stay at home, only made the epidemic worse.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

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