Tokyo predicts daily cases to average nearly 10,000 in 1 week

TOKYO. KAZINFORM - The Tokyo metropolitan government on Thursday projected the seven-day rolling average of new COVID-19 cases will surge to 9,576 a day in a week if cases increase at the current pace, as the apparent sixth wave of the coronavirus pandemic hits the capital, Kyodo reports.

Wednesday's average was 1,148.7 as Tokyo reported 2,198 infections, the first time the capital city's daily count has surpassed 2,000 in over four months.

«It is entirely possible that case counts will go above 10,000,» said Mitsuo Kaku, the head of an experts panel at the metropolitan government. «It is important to be fully prepared in advance.»

Tokyo also raised its COVID-19 alert to the second-highest of four levels on Thursday as the rapid spread of the Omicron variant continues to drive up infections.

It is the first time since September that the alert has stood at the second-highest level.

The occupancy rate of hospital beds for COVID-19 patients was 13.7 percent Wednesday, with 954 people hospitalized and four of them showing severe symptoms, according to the metropolitan government.

The capital city will ask the Japanese government to declare a quasi-state of emergency if the occupancy rate reaches 20 percent and a state of emergency if the rate reaches 50 percent, Gov. Yuriko Koike told reporters.

The nationwide tally Wednesday was 13,244, the highest level in over four months.