Tokyo logs record 2,848 daily COVID-19 cases amid Olympics

Kyodo News

Posted at Jul 27 2021 06:26 PM

Tokyo reported a record 2,848 daily coronavirus infections on Tuesday, four days after the opening of the Olympics, with health experts warning that the worst is yet to come.

The figure, exceeding the previous record of 2,520 cases logged on Jan. 7, comes as the host city of the world's biggest sporting event since the virus first broke out is under a state of emergency following another wave of infections driven by the more contagious Delta variant.

The capital's seven-day rolling average of cases has risen to 1,762.6 per day, up 49.4 percent from the previous week. Compared with Tuesday last week, the daily figure increased 1,461.

Infectious disease experts have warned that the Delta variant of the coronavirus could cause a sharp rise in infections that will peak around Aug. 3, five days before the Olympics wrap up.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga declared a fourth state of emergency in Tokyo from July 12 through Aug. 22, asking restaurants to stop serving alcohol and close early.

But the surge in infections could add pressure on Suga, already under criticism for his pandemic response ahead of a general election this year, to step up countermeasures.

Before the release of the record daily figure, Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike said the metropolitan government was working to secure more hospital beds for COVID-19 patients.

"We're concerned about the rise in people in serious condition," she told reporters.