Here are the latest COVID-19 updates from Japan and beyond:
As of 9:50 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 30
- Infections with the Omicron variant of the coronavirus have been reported across 22 out of 47 prefectures in Japan, a tally based on local government reports showed Thursday, one month after the first domestic case was confirmed.
- A U.N. conference on nuclear nonproliferation due to take place in New York from early next month was postponed again because of surging COVID-19 cases, diplomatic sources said Wednesday.
- With the coronavirus pandemic reducing chances for people to meet in person, a large number of companies in Japan, including several of its largest, have turned to an AI-powered dating app to help their employees find love, and hopefully become happier and more productive workers as a result.
As of 11 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 29
- Japan confirmed a total of 502 new coronavirus cases Wednesday, exceeding the 500 mark for the first time in over two months and creating a source of concern among the public as people travel across the country during the year-end and New Year's holiday period.
- Professional golfer Ryo Ishikawa, who was suspended for violating quarantine rules in October after returning from abroad, has tested positive for the coronavirus, his management company revealed Wednesday.
- A U.N. conference on nuclear nonproliferation scheduled for next month is expected to be postponed again amid the surge of the Omicron variant of the novel coronavirus, diplomatic sources said Tuesday.
- The United States has logged an all-time high of over 440,000 daily coronavirus cases as the Omicron variant circulates in the holiday season, data by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed Tuesday.
- Princess Kako, the niece of Japanese Emperor Naruhito, turned 27 on Wednesday, following another year of restrictions to official duties due to the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic.
Useful resources for foreign residents and visitors in Japan
- Health ministry call center
COVID-19: 0120-565-653 (toll free)
COVID-19 Vaccines: 0120-761-770 (toll free)
-Interpreters available for English, Chinese, Korean, Portuguese and Spanish 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; for Thai 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; for Vietnamese 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- Health ministry's COVID-19 Vaccine Navigation website
- AMDA Medical Information Center's "Multilingual Consultation Service"
- Available in Simple Japanese and English, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays. Also available in Chinese, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish, Tagalog, Thai, and Vietnamese on designated weekdays. Check schedule here.
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government's COVID-19 info
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government hotline
- Available in English, Chinese, Korean and Japanese, 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. (including weekends and holidays)
- 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)