- Eight novel coronavirus vaccine candidates are in clinical trial with another 110 in various stages of development, as governments around the world scramble to contain the virus, according to World Health Organization data.
- One of the high-fliers in the airline industry, Singapore Airlines Ltd., is now struggling to stay airborne due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and this spells trouble for Singapore's air hub status, which is closely tied to the destiny of its national carrier.
- The Indian government announced Saturday that the total number of confirmed novel coronavirus cases in the country stands at 85,940, overtaking China for the first time.
- A Japanese design office has produced a series of humorous infographics to promote social distancing, including one referencing the iconic cover of The Beatles' "Abbey Road" album, with the slogan, "Let's stay one Beatles apart."
- Sumitomo Chemical Co. is providing some 100 million yen ($934,000) to an Israeli startup working to develop a sensor that can detect novel coronavirus infections by scent recognition.
- With the coronavirus pandemic restricting social interaction and global travel, many Japanese-language schools are facing financial difficulties as new students have not been able to enter Japan.
- U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday pitched a national project to accelerate the development of a coronavirus vaccine, saying he hopes for results by the "end of the year" or "maybe before."
- Chicago Cubs pitcher Yu Darvish on Friday joined a growing chorus of Major League Baseball stars expressing resentment about possibly being asked to work in unsafe conditions while the new coronavirus pandemic rages.
- The Japan Rugby Football Union said Friday the Brave Blossoms' summer test matches against Wales and England will be canceled due to the coronavirus outbreak.
- Kyoto's Aoi Matsuri, one of the city's three main festivals, was held Friday on a scaled-down basis, with the colorful procession that has been a major tourist attraction canceled amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.
- Women undergoing fertility treatment in Japan have been forced to make difficult decisions after a medical oversight body called for a postponement of procedures while the coronavirus pandemic rages, intensifying their race against time to become pregnant.
- Japan will test around 10,000 people for coronavirus antibodies starting from next month, as part of efforts to better understand the deadly infection, health minister Katsunobu Kato said Friday.
Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike on Friday unveiled an outline of a road map to ease measures aimed at overcoming the spread of the new coronavirus in the capital. The numerical targets include seeing fewer than 20 new daily cases of COVID-19, Koike said at a press conference.
- Japan's public broadcaster NHK will temporarily halt the broadcast of two of its long-running and popular programs in June, a morning 15-minute drama known as "Asadora" and a period drama, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
- Okinawa marked on Friday the 48th anniversary of its reversion to Japan from U.S. control, as protests over the burden of hosting American military facilities on the southern Japanese island were canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
- Japan's blanket cash handouts to help individuals weather the economic fallout of the coronavirus outbreak have drawn a barrage of criticism from the public, with the ruling party accused of sending mixed messages and some of those in urgent need of the money expressing frustration at the application process.
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"