Japan's Coronavirus Variant Cases Reach 271

Society Lifestyle

Tokyo, March 10 (Jiji Press)--The cumulative number of infections with novel coronavirus variants in Japan, excluding those found through airport quarantine, stood at 271 in 21 of the country's 47 prefectures as of Tuesday, the health ministry said Wednesday.

The figure was up from 194 cases in 20 prefectures four days before, indicating that coronavirus variants are spreading in the country. Overall, the number of variant cases, including 74 found through quarantine at airports, came to 345 as of Tuesday.

The health ministry had previously announced variant cases confirmed by the National Institute of Infectious Diseases through its genetic analysis conducted on samples sent from local governments. But this was changed on Monday, with local governments reporting positive cases found through polymerase chain reaction tests as suspected variant cases and the ministry announcing the total cases confirmed through genetic analysis every Wednesday.

Excluding the cases found at airports, the number of variant cases as of Tuesday was up by 50 from four days before in Osaka Prefecture and by 10 in Kyoto Prefecture, both in western Japan. The western prefecture of Hiroshima confirmed seven new variant cases.

Of the 271 people found with variants, 260 were infected with the strain first detected in Britain, eight with the strain discovered in South Africa and three with the variant found in Brazil.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press