Here are the latest updates from Japan and beyond on the coronavirus outbreak:
As of 11 p.m., Saturday, May 30 (Japan time)
- A probe by nuclear regulators into the causes of the March 2011 Fukushima crisis has been hampered by the coronavirus pandemic, with the dispatch of staff from Tokyo postponed for fear of spreading infection among the some 4,000 on-site decommissioning workers.
- Thirty-eight of Japan's 47 prefectures are set to fully reopen their economies on Monday as they seek to strike a balance between rebuilding the economies hit by the coronavirus and implementing measures to prevent a second wave of infections
- With many smokers reconsidering a habit that seems more dangerous than ever as the coronavirus pandemic rages, an app promoted by a city in western Japan last year may be the way forward for those ready to quit.
- Around 80 percent of mayors across Japan disagree with or are wary of a proposed shift in the start of the academic year to September from April, according to a recent survey conducted amid the closure of schools due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.
- New York City, the hardest-hit spot in the coronavirus outbreak in the United States, will start easing its restrictions on businesses in phases from June 8 as the local spread of the virus has apparently peaked, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday.
As of 11 p.m., Friday, May 29 (Japan time)
- Tokyo will enter a second phase in its relaxation of business restrictions in the capital over the coronavirus pandemic starting Monday, which includes reopening cinemas, sports gyms and cram schools, Gov. Yuriko Koike said Friday.
- The J-League will resume games on July 4 following a roughly four-month stoppage due to the coronavirus pandemic, Chairman Mitsuru Murai said Friday.
- The operator of Tokyo Skytree, a popular tourist destination in the Japanese capital, said Friday it will reopen the landmark tower on Monday after a three-month closure due to the spread of coronavirus infections.
- The Japanese air force's Blue Impulse acrobatics team on Friday performed a flyover over central Tokyo in a show of respect to doctors and medical staff who have been at the forefront of the battle against the coronavirus pandemic.
- The city of Kitakyushu in Japan's southwest said Friday it has been hit by a second wave of coronavirus infections following a recent surge in the number of new cases.
- While medical workers in the United States and Europe have been heralded as heroes in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, many nurses and doctors in Japan have faced discrimination and ostracism despite heightened social media efforts to recognize their contribution.
- Singapore said Thursday it will stop using polymerase chain reaction test as a criteria for releasing COVID-19 patients and will now adopt a time-based discharge policy, allowing such patients to go home after just 21 days of isolation.
Useful resources for foreign residents and visitors in Japan
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government's "Tokyo Coronavirus Support Center for Foreign Residents (TOCOS)" multilingual hotline
- Available in Simple Japanese, English, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Nepali, Indonesian, Tagalog, Thai, Portuguese, Spanish, French, Khmer, and Burmese, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays except national holidays.
0120-296-004 (toll free)
- AMDA Medical Information Center's "Multilingual Consultation Service Regarding COVID-19"
(April 10~May 20, 2020)
- Available in English, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekends and national holidays. Also available in Chinese, Korean, Tagalog, Thai, Spanish, Vietnamese and Portuguese on designated weekdays. Check schedule here.
- Available in English and Chinese on weekdays only, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government's COVID-19 info
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government hotline
- Available in English, Chinese, Korean and Japanese, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
- Available via fax for those with hearing impairments
- Japan National Tourism Organization's "Guide for when you are feeling ill"
- Multilingual clinic/hospital search available in English, Korean, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Japanese
- JNTO's "Japan Visitor Hotline"
- Available in English, Chinese, Korean and Japanese 24 hours a day
+81-50-3816-2787 (from overseas)
- Japan's health ministry hotline
- Available in Japanese only, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
- World Health Organization's "Q&A on coronaviruses"