Cases surge to 6-month high in Tokyo a week before Olympics

Jul 15, 2021, 3:07 AM | Updated: 3:39 am

TOKYO (AP) — New coronavirus cases surged to 1,308 in Tokyo on Thursday, a six-month high, as fears rise of a possible dramatic increase that could flood hospitals during the Olympics that start in eight days.

Tokyo is under a fourth state of emergency, which began Monday and requires restaurants and bars to close early and not serve alcohol through the Olympics, which start July 23.

Thursday’s tally is the highest since 1,485 were recorded on Jan. 21, when Japan was under an earlier state of emergency, and is also a jump from Wednesday’s 1,149.

Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike noted that the largest increase in serious cases and hospitalizations was among people in their 50s and younger who are largely unvaccinated. She expressed concern about the impact on the medical system as infections are propelled by the more contagious delta strain of the virus.

“We need to stay on alert,” Koike said, urging people to minimize outings and stick to basic anti-infection measures “to overcome this very difficult situation.”

New daily cases have been steadily climbing since mid-June and experts say they could hit several thousand during the games.

Japan’s slow vaccination rollout has improved dramatically since May as the government desperately pushes to improve the inoculation rate before the Olympics, but is slowing again due to shortages of imported vaccines. The latest government data show just 19.7% of the population has been fully vaccinated.

Due to the state of emergency in Tokyo and a fear of infections accelerating during the games, organizers last week decided to bar fans for most events, except for limited numbers at outlying locations.

Overall, Japan has had about 828,000 confirmed cases and 15,000 deaths.

Dr. Masataka Inokuchi, a medical adviser for a Tokyo metropolitan government panel, said Thursday he is worried that younger people may celebrate and party because of the Olympics, further accelerating infections.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Russia's President Vladimir Putin and Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu attend the opening of ...
Associated Press

Putin vows to expand arms trade with Russia’s allies

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday vowed to expand military cooperation with the country’s allies, noting that Moscow is ready to offer them its most advanced weapons. Speaking at the opening of an annual arms show outside Moscow that caters to foreign customers, Putin said that Russia’s arms exports play an important […]
9 hours ago
FILE -  A sign for monkeypox vaccinations is shown at a vaccination site, Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2022,...
Associated Press

Britain says monkeypox outbreak “shows signs of slowing”

LONDON (AP) — British health officials say the monkeypox outbreak across the country “shows signs of slowing” but that it’s still too soon to know if the decline will be maintained. In a statement on Monday, the Health Security Agency said authorities are reporting about 29 new monkeypox infections every day, compared to about 52 […]
9 hours ago
This photo provided by ByHeart shows Ron Belldegrun.  The co-founders of baby formula startup ByHea...
Associated Press

ByHeart CEO on launching new baby formula in a supply crisis

WASHINGTON (AP) — The co-founders of baby formula startup ByHeart began working on their product long before the current shortage that’s rattled many American parents. It took Ron Belldegrun and his sister Mia Funt six years to research, test and win regulatory approval for their company’s formula. When the Pennsylvania-based company launched in March, it […]
9 hours ago
Gretchen Robinson, a lesbian high school teacher in Orange County, Fla., poses for a photo at the d...
Associated Press

So-called ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law confuses some Florida schools

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Some Florida schools have moved library books and debated changing textbooks in response to a law critics call “Don’t Say Gay” — and some teachers have worried that family pictures on their desks could get them in trouble. As students return from summer break, educators are cautiously adjusting and waiting to […]
9 hours ago
Russian rockets launch against Ukraine from Russia's Belgorod region are seen at dawn in Kharkiv, U...
Associated Press

Russian shells slam into eastern Ukraine; 3 dead, 20 hurt

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — At least three Ukrainian civilians have been killed and 20 others wounded in the latest artillery barrages from the Russian military, Ukrainian officials said Monday. The eastern region of Donetsk, one of the two provinces making up the country’s industrial heartland of Donbas that has been the focus of a Russian […]
9 hours ago
Associated Press

Nicholas Evans, “The Horse Whisperer” author, dies at 72

LONDON (AP) — Nicholas Evans, the British author of the bestselling novel “The Horse Whisperer,” has died at 72, his representatives said Monday. United Agents said Evans died “suddenly” on Aug. 9 following a heart attack. Published in 1995, “The Horse Whisperer” was Evans’ debut novel and sold more than 15 million copies worldwide. The […]
9 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Ways to prevent clogged drains and what to do if you’re too late

While there are a variety of ways to prevent clogged drains, it's equally as important to know what to do when you're already too late.
(Courtesy Condor)...
Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines shows passion for destinations from Sky Harbor with new-look aircraft

Condor Airlines brings passion to each flight and connects people to their dream destinations throughout the world.
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?
Cases surge to 6-month high in Tokyo a week before Olympics