Many Experts Back Japan COVID-19 Classification Change

Society

Tokyo, Jan. 23 (Jiji Press)--Experts on Monday called for changing Japan's classification of COVID-19 under the infectious disease law, which would be a big step toward the full normalization of economic activity.

Their view was expressed at a subcommittee meeting of the health ministry's Health Sciences Council. The meeting also discussed whether people should continue to wear face masks.

On Friday, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida instructed health minister Katsunobu Kato and other related ministers to consider lowering the classification of COVID-19 under the law to Category V, the same as seasonal flu, from the current Category II, the second highest on the five-tier system based on the severity of symptoms.

The government is planning to lower the classification and review guidelines on indoor mask-wearing this spring.

Participants in the day's meeting discussed what to do with restrictions on COVID-19 patients and their close contacts, the medical care supply system and measures to prevent infections after the planned classification change.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press