Hokkaido to End State of Emergency over Coronavirus Thurs.

Society Lifestyle Politics

Sapporo, March 18 (Jiji Press)--Hokkaido Governor Naomichi Suzuki said Wednesday the state of emergency he declared in the northernmost Japan prefecture over the novel coronavirus will end on Thursday as scheduled.

Suzuki declared the three-week state of emergency Feb. 28, imposing extraordinary measures such as a stay-at-home request for the weekend and school closures across the prefecture, where the number of COVID-19 cases was highest by prefecture.

"We've managed to avoid an explosive spread of infections and a collapse of the health care system, which would have made it difficult to save lives and livelihoods," Suzuki told a meeting on measures to fight the virus.

Hokkaido will shift its focus to balancing the fight against the virus and social and economic activities, he added.

On Wednesday, the number of infection cases in Hokkaido rose by two to 154, including six deaths. Seventy-five were receiving treatment, including six in serious conditions.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press