Japan reports zero COVID deaths

·1-min read

Japan has recorded no daily deaths from COVID-19 for the first time in more than a year, local media reports say.

Prior to Sunday, there had not been a day without a COVID-19 death since August 2, 2020, according to a tally by national broadcaster NHK.

COVID-19 cases and deaths have fallen dramatically throughout Japan as vaccinations have increased to cover more than 70 per cent of the population.

New daily infections peaked at more than 25,000 during an August wave driven by the infectious Delta variant. The country has had more than 18,000 deaths from the disease during the course of the pandemic.

To gird against a possible rebound this winter, the government plans to start booster vaccine shots next month and is working to secure pill-based treatments for milder cases to reduce hospitalisations.

Shigeru Omi, the nation's top health adviser, on Monday sketched out a new scale for measuring the seriousness of coronavirus infections and a tool for predicting the hospital beds that may be needed in a new wave.

"We've learned over the past two years that we need to take strong, fast and intensive measures," Omi told reporters.

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