COVID-19 INFORMATION What you need to know about the coronavirus if you are living in Japan or planning a visit.

Bruce Chatwin comments

Posted in: Abe warns Japanese to prepare for prolonged coronavirus battle See in context

According to NHK, Chiba Prefecture has just announced 57 new cases. All the cases are in one facility for the disabled. 32 of the people who tested positive work there which means that they have lives outside the facility, thus potentially spreading the virus.

Incredible.

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Posted in: Abe warns Japanese to prepare for prolonged coronavirus battle See in context

According to NHK, Chiba Prefecture has just announced 57 new cases. All the cases are in one facility for the disabled. 37 of the 70 residents had symptoms of fever, so the prefecture was conducting a virus test.

Shocking.

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Posted in: Tokyo governor says people can enjoy cherry blossoms next year See in context

According to NHK, Chiba Prefecture has announced 57 new cases. All the cases are in one facility for the disabled.

Shocking.

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Posted in: Tokyo governor says people can enjoy cherry blossoms next year See in context

I don't think it is necessary denoting PCR test per million people, just giving the average test for a period is ok. There are smaller countries with population below a million.

What number would you prefer then?

Per 100,000 people? Germany is testing at a rate of 580 tests per 100,000 people. Japan is testing at a rate of 22 tests per 100,000 people.

Per 10,000 people? Germany is testing at a rate of 58 tests per 10,000 people. Japan is testing at a rate of 2 tests per 10,000 people.

Notice a pattern?

Typo in the previous post...

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Posted in: Tokyo governor says people can enjoy cherry blossoms next year See in context

@Tora

Good information ! Can you post the source?

Good ol' wiki:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/COVID-19_testing

Also, the site below is an official accounting of the number of tests done in Japan. Divide the number of tests by the population of Japan and you have the rate.

27,005 tests divided by 126.5 (million) = 213.48 tests per million people

https://www.mhlw.go.jp/stf/seisakunitsuite/bunya/0000164708_00001.html

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Posted in: Tokyo governor says people can enjoy cherry blossoms next year See in context

I don't think it is necessary denoting PCR test per million people, just giving the average test for a period is ok. There are smaller countries with population below a million.

What number would you prefer then?

Per 100,000 people? Germany is testing at a rate of 580 tests per 100,000 people. Japan is testing at a rate of 21.5 tests per 100,000 people.

Per 10,000 people? Germany is testing at a rate of 58 tests per 100,000 people. Japan is testing at a rate of 2.15 tests per 100,000 people.

Notice a pattern?

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Posted in: Tokyo governor says people can enjoy cherry blossoms next year See in context

Meanwhile, Tokyo is testing for COVID-19 at a rate of 150 tests per million people which is substantially lower than the 215 test per million people rate that the whole of Japan is currently testing at.

By way of comparison, Germany is currently testing at a rate of over 5,800 tests per million people. Thailand, Peru, Kazakhstan, Vietnam, Ecuador, and Costa Rica, to name a few, are all testing at a higher rate than Japan.

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Posted in: Osaka governor asks residents to refrain from making non-essential outings See in context

Osaka governor asks residents to refrain from making non-essential outings

And yet school and university club activities continue...

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Posted in: Tokyo governor says people can enjoy cherry blossoms next year See in context

People will go to the supermarkets instead and clean out what's left.

May as well make it a family outing...

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Posted in: Japan, spared mass outbreak so far, now sees national crisis after Tokyo surge See in context

@cleo

Not to worry, all the glitterati in the picture have surely been tested...

Thanks for posting the link.

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Posted in: Japan, spared mass outbreak so far, now sees national crisis after Tokyo surge See in context

@Alfie Noakes

You are more than welcome.

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Posted in: Japan, spared mass outbreak so far, now sees national crisis after Tokyo surge See in context

it has been suggested quite widely that the relatively low number of known cases of COVID-19 in Japan is mainly due to the low number of tests for the disease that have been carried out. But looking more closely at the maths shows that this is almost certainly wrong.

Last sentence in the paragraph, which for some unfathomable reason, was omitted: "Japan has experienced a slow growth in the disease relative to other countries despite limited testing."

Last paragraph in the article, which for some strange reason, was omitted: (In Japan, COVID-19) "cases continue to grow and despite the collapse in the number of foreign tourists, groups of Japanese are still gathering to enjoy the seasonal cherry blossoms. It is hard to look at such cheerful gatherings without feeling a slight sense of dread for the months ahead."

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Posted in: Japan, spared mass outbreak so far, now sees national crisis after Tokyo surge See in context

And where is the data on how many people have died from pneumonia in the Tokyo/Kanto area this year?

This article gives a pretty good answer to your question:

https://safecast.org/2020/03/making-sense-of-covid-19-numbers-in-japan/

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Posted in: Japan, spared mass outbreak so far, now sees national crisis after Tokyo surge See in context

Safecast has a crowdsourced map to help people document their experiences when seeking COVID-19 testing — were they able to get a test when they sought one, or not.

Here is the reported experience one person in Tokyo: "I was seen by doctors on Day 3 of fever, cough, diarrhea, and body aches. Chest X-ray clear , influenza negative blood work normal. Was told I would not be referred to Minister of Health because 1. I was not in contact with anyone from China or Italy 2. I do not have pneumonia 3. I have not had a fever longer than 4 days as a “high risk” patient or 7 days of fever not at risk. I was told it would be unlikely any testing would happen and to go home and rest and to contact them if I had difficulty breathing. Several days later, all symptoms persisted, fever ranged between 39.2-37.3. A rash developed across my chest and back. Phone consultation with doctor recommends an antihistamine and again recommends not to go to hospital unless I have difficulty breathing. Day 10. All symptoms remain."

No wonder Japan has a comparatively low number of confirmed cases.

https://covid19map.safecast.org/views/map

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Posted in: Japan to set up coronavirus task force; no state of emergency yet See in context

My house is near a university rowing clubhouse that is shared by three universities from Kobe and Osaka. A little beyond the clubhouse there's a big park with soccer fields, tennis courts, gateball pitches, basketball courts, etc. This morning there was a group of over 50 people at the rowing clubhouse. The soccer fields, basketball courts, baseball fields were filled with what appeared to be high school clubs as the kids were wearing team uniforms. Many groups of people were having BBQs in the park too.

It seems a bit counterproductive for all these clubs and circles to continue their activities schools are shut down and universities are cancelling their classes due to health concerns related to COVID-19.

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Posted in: Experts warn Japanese growing complacent of coronavirus risk See in context

@kaminokaze

Credit where credit is due; over 4,000 people were reportedly tested yesterday

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Posted in: Experts warn Japanese growing complacent of coronavirus risk See in context

@Fuzzy

It is an interesting article, but worth being a bit skeptical of due to its anonymous source. Still, it raises and discusses some interesting points. I thought the point regarding Japan's pneumonia vaccination program for those over 65 was particularly interesting but it appears that Italy also has a fairly robust pneumonia vaccination regime for those over 65 in high risk groups.

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Posted in: Experts warn Japanese growing complacent of coronavirus risk See in context

Asia Times is reporting the following:

An official at the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare– speaking on condition of anonymity – offered Asia Times an unauthorized explanation of Japan’s approach. “We are in a period where containment is probably not realistic,” the official said. “We need to focus on treating the serious cases and most experts would quietly agree. If everyone is urged to get testing, then medical institutions will overflow with people who do not need to be there. This not only detracts from taking care of more critical cases, it could indirectly result in a greater health crisis.”

“Ask yourself, ‘What is the value of wisdom when it brings no benefit to those who are the wiser?’ Most of the infected will recover on their own, thanks to their own immune systems. We need to first take care of those whose immune systems are failing them, or the health care system itself will fail.”

Is this true or not? Seems a bit farfetched to me.

https://asiatimes.com/2020/03/japans-winning-its-quiet-fight-against-covid-19/

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Posted in: The COVID-19 crisis and risk society in the second modernity See in context

@MG

agreed

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Posted in: The COVID-19 crisis and risk society in the second modernity See in context

Osaka University is carrying on with classes as usual...

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Posted in: Tokyo Olympics seem sure to happen — but in 2021, not 2020 See in context

No presumptions at all. Well, other than on your part.

Quote take directly from the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and Canadian Paralympic Committee (CPC) press release: "The COC and CPC urgently call on the International Olympic Committee (IOC), and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to postpone the Games for one year and we offer them our full support in helping navigate all the complexities that rescheduling the Games will bring. While we recognize the inherent complexities around a postponement, nothing is more important than the health and safety of our athletes and the world community."

Let me guess, a septic, right?

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Posted in: Tokyo Olympics seem sure to happen — but in 2021, not 2020 See in context

Very uncouth.

-- Very responsible.

There. I fixed it for you.

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Posted in: Tokyo Olympics seem sure to happen — but in 2021, not 2020 See in context

From The Nation:

Why haven’t the Olympic games been canceled? Each Olympic city is required to sign a host city contract with the IOC that puts locals on the hook for cost overruns. The contract also affords the IOC enormous latitude to withdraw the Games. One section of the 81-page Tokyo 2020 host city contract states that the IOC can terminate the contract and yank the Games “if the IOC has reasonable grounds to believe, in its sole discretion, that the safety of participants in the Games would be seriously threatened or jeopardised for any reason. This means that it is not Prime Minister Abe, nor anyone in the host country for that matter, who has the final word on whether the show in fact goes on. That responsibility—or “sole discretion”—rests on the shoulders of the International Olympic Committee and its president, Thomas Bach, and thus far, the IOC’s belief—even in this climate—is that the Olympics are too big to fail."

https://www.thenation.com/article/society/cancel-olympics-coronavirus/

It would have been helpful if this had been made clear to the readers here and the Japanese public in general. Although I can see why politicians wouldn't want this widely known.

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Posted in: Tokyo Olympics seem sure to happen — but in 2021, not 2020 See in context

With this decision, is anyone expecting a surge in testing in Japan ?

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Posted in: Experts warn Japan may not have enough new virus test kits See in context

On NHK (in Japanese)

According to Shimonoseki City, a man entered Shimonoseki City via Fukuoka Airport from the Philippines on the 9th of this month and then got a fever of 38 degrees on the 12th, and symptoms such as a cough appeared, so he went to a hospital.

He returned to the hospital on the 21st because his symptoms did not improve. He was diagnosed with mycoplasma pneumonia, a bacterial infection.

At that time, the doctor judged that a new coronavirus test was also necessary, and sent the sample to the prefectural environmental health center for testing. As a result, the infection was confirmed on the 22nd.

Absolutely mind-boggling.

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Posted in: Experts warn Japan may not have enough new virus test kits See in context

Anybody under 60 has very little risk from this virus.

In the US, "New data show that up to one-fifth of infected people ages 20-44 have been hospitalized, including 2%-4% who required treatment in an intensive care unit."

"In the first retrospective study of Covid-19 among children in the country where the pandemic began (China), they (researchers) count 2,143 cases in children." "6% of pediatric cases were severe and even critical, compared to 19% of adult cases. And in an unexplained finding, nearly 11% of the Covid-19 cases in infants were severe or critical, though no babies died."

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Posted in: Experts warn Japan may not have enough new virus test kits See in context

Anybody under 60 has very little risk from this virus.

Publicly available data suggests that 8.4% of the people between 0 and 49 years of age who have been confirmed with COVID-19 have been hospitalized.

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Posted in: The Japan conundrum is just the fact that if you don't test for it, you're not going to find a lot of cases. See in context

Where can you see stats/info for the pneumonia cases? (or other respiratory illnesses, or deaths marked off as such, or diabetes, or heart problems,etc?)

This is the only data that I could find

In Japanese up to 2018:

https://www.mhlw.go.jp/toukei/saikin/hw/jinkou/geppo/nengai18/dl/gaikyou30.pdf

In English up to 2016:

https://www.mhlw.go.jp/english/database/db-hh/xls/1-29.xls

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Posted in: IOC chief rebuts growing calls for Olympic postponement See in context

As Alfie Noakes noted, Bach is certainly not thick; amoral perhaps, but not thick. You may not like him, but he is not an idiot.

As some other posters here have noted, there appears to be a game of chicken going on: which side is going to blink first and bow to the seemingly inevitable postponement or cancellation of the Olympics, with the understanding that whoever blinks first is likely going to be stuck with a huge bill. Bach would appear to be holding better cards than Abe at this point.

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Posted in: Abe says schools to reopen after spring break; remains cautious about big events See in context

My professor friends in USA all teaching from home using Zoom for online teaching, while Japanese Min of Education tells me they don't have distance learning, a few random high schools do it independently but there is no list or database of those schools.

Some private unis are going online, but the public unis appear to be toeing the govt line and holding classes as usual.

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