Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building
Photo: Fumiaki Hayashi/Unsplash

Governor Koike reveals the new way Tokyo will monitor coronavirus

The new standards do not specify a threshold number of new cases that would trigger a possible return to restrictions

Emma Steen
Written by
Emma Steen

[Update, July 1] The Tokyo government has replaced its former Tokyo Alert system with a new set of criteria to evaluate the coronavirus situation in the metropolis. Starting today, the government will consider the following factors, which will help inform its decision making moving forward. 

-Rate of positive PCR and antigen test results 
-Number of new patients 
-Number of hospitalised patients 
-Number of patients in critical condition 
-Number of new patients with unconfirmed routes of infection
-Number of emergency calls regarding Covid-19 to the Tokyo Fire Department 
-Number of times it took over 20 minutes for emergency responders to take a new patient to hospital

According to Asahi Shimbun, the Tokyo government was able to provide appropriate medical care when infections peaked between March and April, and therefore it is prioritising economic activities for the time being with no plans for another round of closures or restrictions.


[June 30] Earlier this month, the Tokyo government issued an emergency alert that warned people of a increased risk of infection after the number of new Covid-19 coronavirus cases jumped to 34 on June 2. While the alert was lifted just nine days later, another one was not put in place even after 60 cases were reported on June 28, a day which marked the highest number of new cases since May 5.

On June 30, Tokyo governor Yuriko Koike announced that new standards will be put in place with the possibility of a second wave of infections in mind. The Japan Times reports that back in May, Koike said she would consider closing businesses again if the average number of new infections hit 50 per week. Koike, however, has now amended her previous statement, revealing that the new guidelines will not specify a numerical standard for triggering future Tokyo alerts or business closures. 

In order to evaluate the situation more accurately than before, Koike said that the new standards will take into account the number of possible coronavirus cases in addition to the number of confirmed cases. Experts will also consider current hospital capacity by comparing the number of available hospital beds with the number of suspected cases to determine the appropriate steps to take.

This is a developing story; we will keep you updated as and when new information is released.

Keep up to date with the coronavirus situation in Tokyo and Japan here.

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