Photo/Illutration A man wearing a face mask to protect against the novel coronavirus stands beside a display of air cleaners at an electronics retailer in Tokyo on Jan. 12. The banner at the bottom reads: "Anti-virus." (AP Photo)

New COVID-19 cases in the capital surged past the 1,000 mark again on Jan. 13, after the Tokyo Medical Association warned that medical facilities were under tremendous strain dealing with the increase in patients.

The daily total of 1,433 new cases marked the first time in two days for the number to top 1,000, according to metropolitan government officials.

The tally dipped below the 1,000 mark for the first time in eight days on Jan. 12, when 970 novel coronavirus infections were confirmed.

The capital had a record 144 COVID-19 patients in serious condition on Jan. 12, but the number dropped to 141, the officials said.

Tokyo defines serious cases as those requiring ventilators or extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, also known as an ECMO lung bypass machine. But such equipment, as well as hospital beds, are becoming in short supply in Tokyo.

On three straight days this month, Tokyo reported more than 2,000 new COVID-19 cases.

As of Jan. 12, a record high 3,427 patients were hospitalized with the disease in the capital.

“It’s like playing a cat-and-mouse game as the daily number of new cases exceeds 2,000,” Haruo Ozaki, head of the Tokyo Medical Association, said at a news conference on Jan. 12. “I would like each resident to think carefully about their behavior to contain the spread of the virus under the month-long state of emergency.”