(UPI) August 21 — The government announced on Sunday that Prime Minister Fumio Kishida had tested positive for COVID-19, as the country has seen an average of 200,000 cases in the past week, or 29.8% of the world’s total, and record deaths.
There has been a weekly decline of 14% in coronavirus cases and a weekly decline of 17% in fatalities around the world.
According to the Prime Minister’s Office, on Saturday night 65-year-old Kishida experienced mild symptoms, including a slight fever and cough, and he subsequently took a PCR test the following morning.
A month ago, the government’s top spokesman, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno, also tested positive, following the lead of ruling Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker Taro Kono.
Across Japan on Sunday, 226,171 were reported, with 24,780 of those in Tokyo alone. On Thursday, the United States added a record-breaking 255,534.
Additional 226 fatalities were reported just two days after a record 287 had been reported. The previous record was set on February 23 with a wave count of 272. The total number of deaths in the country is 37,076 and ranks 28th in the world.
At number 10, Japan now has 17,205,939 cases, making it the world’s leading country.
There were an additional 1,400 cases of infection in Japan in the past week, making it the country with the highest rate of new infections worldwide. This represented a decrease of 3% compared to the previous week. With 1,754 deaths, the country saw a 24% increase, placing it second worldwide behind the United States’ 2,170 deaths, which fell by 28%.
Worldometers.info reports that as of April 13 the number of BA.5 Omicron subvariant infections had fallen to 4,999,812 with a daily average of 714,259 and had last topped 1 million for the first time on April 13. The daily record was 3,839,998 on January 21. At 600,830,865, the sum now includes the 553,726 from Sunday and the 628,620 from Saturday, when Japan contributed 253,265.
This past week’s fatalities totaled 14,197, a decrease from the previous week. That number drops to 1,297 on June 21, 2020, just 10 days after the WHO declared COVID-19 a pandemic, and the daily average drops to 2,028. There were 946 on Sunday and 1,316 on Saturday, bringing the grand total to 6,471,847. On June 19 it was 946, the last time it was under 1,000.
On weekends, not all countries submit their data. On weekends, the CDC doesn’t release any new information.
Other countries with increases of over 25,000 cases in the past week include Russia (with 160,580 cases, a 40% increase), Hong Kong (with 39,682 cases, a 28% increase), and the United States (with 25,000 cases, a 2% increase).
Second-most cases were reported in South Korea (893,000) with a 5% increase, followed by the United States (513,000) with a 30% decrease, Germany (272,000) with 11% fewer, Taiwan (153,000) with a 1% increase, Italy (150,922) with a 22% decrease, France (122,486) with 21% fewer, Australia (122,486) with 26% fewer, and Brazil (114,894) with a 25% decrease.
No. 11 South Korea has seen a 25% increase to 414 deaths, the Philippines have seen a 56% increase to 316 deaths, Indonesia has seen a 25% increase to 157 deaths, and Hungary has seen a 46% increase to 117 deaths over the past week.
With 1,080 fatalities, Brazil ranked third, but this number was down by 26%. There was a drop of 4% in Germany, a drop of 26% in Italy, a drop of 46% in Britain, a drop of 9% in Australia, a rise of 2% in Iran, a drop of 9% in France, and a rise of 14% in Russia. Germany ranked #4, Italy ranked #5, Britain ranked #6, Australia ranked #7, and Russia ranked #10.
For the second week in a row, all continents saw a drop in cases, with the two leaders both seeing drops of 30%. Africa had 22%, or 12,588,262, Oceania had 20%, or 11,990,574, Europe had 17%, with a global high of 219,851,663, and Asia had 6%, or 179,873,285.
For the second week in a row, only Asia has reported an increase in deaths, this time by 4% to 1,460,307. Europe saw the largest decrease, at 25%, followed by North America with a decrease of 1,517,300 (20%), Oceania with a decrease of 10% (18,729), and Africa with a decrease of 3% (257,285).
According to Worldometers.info, the United States tops the charts with 1,065,569 deaths and 95,345,858 infections. The United States set a new daily record of 909,397 cases on January 13. With 682,587 deaths, Brazil is in second place, and with 34,284,864 total cases, it is in fourth place, with 5,079 cases reported on Sunday—the lowest number since 3,809 on April 24. India ranks second in total cases with 44,339,429 (including 11,539 on June 14), third in total deaths with 527,332 (including 43 on June 14), and fourth in total cases with 527,429 (including 11,539 on June 14).
On May18, 2021, in India, without accounting for regional differences, the daily death toll reached 4,529.
Russia has the fourth-lowest death toll at 383,560 as of Sunday, with 64 lives lost that day and 34 in the preceding 22 days tied for the fewest in the world since April 16, 2020.
With 329,091 deaths, Mexico ranks #5 on the list, and #10 on Sunday alone. The Saturday population of Peru was 215,317, placing it in sixth place. Britain ranks #7 with a total of 187,018; weekend numbers are not available. France dropped one spot to tenth with 153,501 visitors, Italy stayed in eighth with 174,659 (including 63 on Sunday), and Indonesia stayed in ninth with 157,377 (including 12 on Sunday).
France ranks third on the list with 34,339.792 cases, which includes 14,820 cases of Sadturay. As of Sunday, Germany had 31,808,179 residents, Britain had 23,460,787, South Korea had 22,240,331, including 110,944 on Sunday, Italy had 21,650,468 residents, Russia had 19,117,343 residents, Turkey had 16,671,848 residents, and Russia had 39,669 residents on Sunday.
South Korea’s 178,480 arrivals in the past week are the most since April 13’s 195,370.
Among Thursday’s 287 reported deaths, 91.9% were people aged 60 and up. The KDCA reported that since the first case of the virus was confirmed in the country in January 2020, a total of 29 children under the age of 10 have died.
So far, 44 COVID-19 patients younger than 18 have died; among them, 52.3% had underlying health conditions like neurological or endocrine problems.
“The goal of the immunization drive is to reduce the number of fatalities among the country’s youth. People with preexisting medical conditions should strongly consider getting vaccinated “according to the KDCA.
Only 1.5% of children between the ages of 5 and 11 have received both required vaccination doses. Only 16.5% of those eligible (12-17 year olds) have received their booster shot.
With a population of 7.9 billion, Bloomberg estimates that more than 12.5 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered around the world. This represents a gain of less than 100 million in just one week. Mainland One-shot vaccination rates in China are the highest in the world at 92.4% among the country’s 1.5 billion people, with 3.4 billion doses having been administered. India ranks second with 2.1 billion out of a total of 1.4 billion, or 74.2%.
According to data compiled by The New York Times, 81% of the population in Latin American countries has received at least one dose, followed by 80% in Asia-Pacific and the United States and Canada, 69% in Europe, 57% in the Middle East, and 27% in Africa.
The population of Japan has been vaccinated against disease with a single dose of vaccine at a rate of 82.7% in the seventh wave.
On August 22, 2021, during the Delta surge and just two weeks after the conclusion of the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo (which were pushed back a year due to the pandemic), the number of confirmed cases reached 26,184. Prior to the spike, on February 6, there were 105,816 cases reported.
The health care system, officials say, will be further stressed. The number of reported infections is decreasing in the greater Tokyo area, according to the panel.
In the next week or two, experts say, “we need to ensure that new infection cases continue to trend lower.”
Unlike many other countries, Japan has maintained rigorous isolation policies and limits on international travel. Governor Yuriko Koike announced last week at a press conference that the metropolitan Tokyo government will resume its tourism promotion campaign for residents on September 1.
Japan has a relatively low case and death rate, despite the increasing numbers.
While the global average is 830.2 and Peru ranks first with 6,341 deaths per million, Japan ranks 128th with 293.
As a large country, Japan ranks 103rd with a case rate of 134,670 per million, behind Austria (533,382), Portugal (532,076), and Denmark (528,458). There are 125 million people living in Japan.
Up until this past Saturday, the CDC had predicted that 88.9 percent of cases in the United States were due to the BA.5 Omicron strain. In late April, the virus was detected for the first time. The Omicron variant is strongly associated with nearly all of the cases.
Compared to 39.6% last week, the CDC has categorized 33.9% of counties, districts, and territories as “high,” 41.1% as “medium,” and 25% as “low.” Outside of buildings, masks are strongly discouraged in “high” locations.
There was a weekly decrease of 6.1% from the previous week, with 5,690 new hospitalizations recorded between July 27 and Tuesday. Since it was first identified, COVID-19 has resulted in 5,161,555 hospitalizations.
Predictions for the efficacy of treatments for COVID-19, such as Paxlovid, are positive. In the US, it’s completely free.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported on Thursday that the vaccination rate for adults in the United States was 90% after just one dose, with coverage at 77.2% and boosters at 51.5%. With the second booster reserved for those over the age of 50, the overall population coverage rates are 79% after one dose, 67.4% after two, 48.4% after three, and 33.2% after four.
The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Anthony Fauci, recently advocated for the Black community to get a booster shot before the fall outbreak. TheGrio spoke with him just last week.
This booster, an updated version of the bivalent BA.5 vaccine, may be available as early as the middle of September, and he advised African-Americans to “stay heads up for the availability of this updated bivalent BA.5 vaccine” to reduce their risk of infection and severe disease.
According to the CDC, black Americans have rates that are 1.1 times higher than white Americans for cases, 2.2 times higher for hospitalizations, and 1.7 times higher for deaths. 1.5% of all cases, 2.1% of all hospitalizations, and 1.8% of all fatalities are Hispanic. At 1.5 per case, 2.8 per hospitalization, and 2.1 per death, American Indians and Alaska Natives have some of the highest rates.
“African Americans as a group, generally, are employed in jobs that put them out in society in contact with individuals where the risk of getting infected is greater,” Fauci said.
Also, he mentioned that preexisting conditions like diabetes, hypertension, and chronic lung disease, which disproportionately affect Black Americans and other people of color, “make it more likely that if you do get infected, you’ll have a severe outcome.”
More than 5,226 people have lost their lives since COVID-19 first appeared in China more than 2 and a half years ago. The number had been relatively stable at 4,636 since early February of 2021, until a sudden increase in April.
China reported 602 new cases on Sunday, up from 5,659 on April 29. Illness has been confirmed in those individuals. In mainland China, only the asymptomatic cases are reported.
Due to the recent outbreak, Shanghai has been put on lockdown. All schools, including kindergartens, were closed for two months, but they will reopen on September 1.
On Sunday, manufacturing of Christmas decorations resumed in Yiwu, an eastern Chinese city. Nearly two-thirds of all Christmas decorations and gifts come from that region.
This month, the city has reported 710 confirmed cases.
Some 40 cases of the virus were discovered in the coastal Chinese city of Xiamen, prompting the government to order testing of over five million residents. In addition, the district committee for Xiamen’s Jimei Maritime Pandemic Control announced that “both fishermen and their seafood must be tested.”
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