Health Minister Norihisa Tamura missed the Diet session on Tuesday due to having the flu.
Officials told media that Tamura started feeling unwell after the end of a budget affairs meeting on Monday afternoon, TBS reported, adding that he received a flu vaccination.
Health authorities say Japan is in the grip of a flu epidemic. According to the the National Institute of Infectious Diseases, 1.32 million cases of flu were reported nationwide in the week to Jan 26, double the previous week.
The health ministry is advising people to get their flu shots, wash their hands thoroughly with soap and water, and practice general preventative measures in an effort to ward off further flu outbreaks until at least the end of February.© Japan Today