The number of cases in Japan drops from a peak of more than 5,000 per day
Briefly casting our eyes abroad, from Japan The number of COVID has dropped to its lowest level in nearly a year, just as other parts of Asia are grappling with an increase in infections.
New daily cases in Tokyo have fallen to 87 Monday, the lowest tally since November 2 of last year, and a steep drop from more than 5,000 per day in an August wave that hammered the capital’s medical infrastructure.
After a slow start, Japan has made rapid progress on its vaccination campaign and nearly six months of emergency distancing restrictions have likely helped stem the spread of the virus. Japan vaccinated 61% of its population and the government was preparing for booster injections to avoid revolutionary cases.
Whatever the cause of the lull, experts say time is running out to prevent another resurgence.
Still, the speed at which a wave of infections and hospitalizations fueled by the infectious Delta variant has ebbed has baffled experts.
Hiroshi Nishiura from Kyoto University is among those who believe that the summer peak in cases and the subsequent drop was mainly due to trends in human activity. Infectivity, measured by the actual number of reproductions, is correlated with vacations, he said.
But other experts say infection trends have less to do with travel than with regular seasonal trends.