Photo/Illutration Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike urges restaurants and karaoke parlors that serve alcohol to cut operating hours to slow the spread of the coronavirus, at a news conference on Nov. 25. (Hiroyuki Yamamoto)

Tokyo's number of COVID-19 patients in serious condition rose to 60 on Nov. 26, breaking again the record that was set in late May, metropolitan health officials said. 

Medical experts and metropolitan officials voiced alarm over the anticipated increase in serious cases in the coming days at a meeting on Nov. 26.

“The growth in the number of COVID-19 patients with serious symptoms would make it extremely difficult for Tokyo hospitals to care for patients with other diseases alongside them,” an official said.

After the meeting, Masataka Inokuchi, vice chair of the Tokyo Medical Association, said the number of patients with a stroke or heart attack usually surge in the winter.

Tokyo's serious cases jumped to 51 on Nov. 24, the highest since the lifting of the state of emergency on May 25 and an increase of 10 from the day before.

The number of serious cases in the capital then hit a new high of 54 cases on Nov. 25. 

Serious cases refer to patients requiring ventilators or on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) lung bypass machines, based on the metropolitan government’s own criteria.

Tokyo's daily new infections stood at 481 on Nov. 26, the second straight day it reached the 400 threshold.

A total of 111 new patients were in their 20s, accounting for the largest age group.

But patients in other age groups were almost evenly represented, with 82 in their 40s, 79 in their 30s, 69 in their 50s and 83 at 65 or older.