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.
Japan and beyond: Week in Photos - December 18~24
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)