Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to hold a press conference on Friday amid growing concern about his health, senior government officials said Tuesday.

Abe is expected to provide an explanation about the measures his government has been taking in response to the coronavirus pandemic, as well as concerning his health condition, the officials said.

Abe "should explain (his health condition) by himself. I suppose he will tell (the public) that he is fine," said a senior lawmaker of Abe's Liberal Democratic Party.

It would be Abe's first press conference at his office in Tokyo since June 18.

For the first time in two weeks, Abe started work from the morning at the prime minister's office, working there for eight hours in what some saw as an attempt to quell speculation that his health may be deteriorating.

"His voice is regaining its strength," a source at the prime minister's office said.

Abe, whose first 2006-2007 stint as prime minister was abruptly ended by an intestinal disease called ulcerative colitis, has seemingly stayed healthy since returning to power in 2012 with the help of a new drug.

On Monday, Abe revisited Keio University Hospital in Tokyo to be informed of the results of the checkup he had a week earlier and to undergo additional tests.

"I would like to inform you all at another time," he told reporters then.

The hospital visit put a damper on the milestone the same day of Abe becoming Japan's longest-serving prime minister with 2,799 uninterrupted days in office, breaking the previous record held by his great-uncle Eisaku Sato.

Speculation about Abe's health, initially triggered when a magazine reported he had vomited blood in July, has been swirling since he spent more than seven hours at the hospital on Aug. 17.

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