THE ASAHI SHIMBUN
December 8, 2020 at 18:56 JST
The Kabukicho entertainment district in Tokyo’s Shinjuku Ward on Nov. 18 (Asahi Shimbun file photo)
Tokyo logged 352 fresh cases of the novel coronavirus on Dec. 8, the first time the daily count in the capital has exceeded 300 since Dec. 6, when 327 new infections were confirmed.
Neighboring Saitama Prefecture reported 172 fresh cases of infection the same day, matching the previous Nov. 21 record for a daily count.
In the city of Kawaguchi, 13 residents of a nursing home, Anshin Home Kawaguchi, tested positive. Another resident of the facility tested positive for the virus in a different area, prompting city officials to declare a cluster infection at the facility.
Saitama prefectural authorities also said there were three deaths from COVID-19.
In Tokyo, the number of serious cases requiring ventilators or extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, also known as an ECMO lung bypass machine, rose by five from the previous day to 60 on Dec. 8, metropolitan government officials said.
Of the 352 fresh daily cases, 78 patients are in their 20s, followed by 71 in their 30s, 59 in their 40s, and 52 in their 50s.
Tokyo officials on Dec. 7 said that 160 people who work at the capital’s Toyosu fish market had tested positive for the virus.
The first infection there was confirmed Aug. 15 among intermediary wholesalers and other employees at the site in Koto Ward.
As numbers kept rising, industry groups and others conducted voluntary testing. By Dec. 4, officials said 3,111 people had taken the test and 71 showed positive readings for the novel coronavirus.
Metropolitan government officials insist that an infection cluster had not broken out at the market because the cases did not occur at the same time and experts were unable to track routes of infection in some cases.
According to the health ministry, the number of severe COVID-19 patients nationwide marked a record high 530 as of Dec. 6.
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