Japan to Adopt New Novel Coronavirus Alert System


Tokyo, Nov. 8 (Jiji Press)--A Japanese government panel of experts at a meeting Monday agreed to adopt a new novel coronavirus alert system that better reflects medical care availability.

Japan's existing four-tier COVID-19 alert system mainly focuses on the number of new infection cases.

"The new system is intended to keep the infection situation at levels that do not put strains on the medical care system, with the aim of bringing social and economic activities, and daily life back to normal" Shigeru Omi, who heads the panel, told reporters after the meeting. "We will keep monitoring the number of new cases closely but give more weight to the levels of strain on the medical system," he said.

"The coronavirus situation is entering a new phase," economic revitalization minister Daishiro Yamagiwa, who heads the state's fight against the coronavirus, said at the meeting. "We will further strengthen the prevention, detection and early treatment in a bid to better prepare for the (potential) next wave of novel coronavirus infections by assuming the worst-case scenario," he said.

The existing scale gauges the severity of the COVID-19 situation based on the weekly number of new positive cases per population of 100,000 and other numerical data and also by taking the availability of hospital beds for COVID-19 patients into account.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press