Photo/Illutration Pedestrians wait at the Shibuya crossing near Shibuya Station in Tokyo on Dec. 13 while maintaining social distancing to prevent the spread of infections. (The Asahi Shimbun/ Kazuyoshi Sako)

Tokyo confirmed 305 new cases of novel coronavirus infections on Dec. 14, along with 73 serious cases, the highest since the state of emergency declaration was lifted in late May. 

According to the Tokyo metropolitan government, the 73 patients had severe symptoms that require the use of a ventilator or an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) device, which circulates blood through an artificial lung.

The number increased by three from the previous day.  

The Tokyo metropolitan government announced on Dec. 10 that it increased the number of beds for patients with severe COVID-19 symptoms from 150 to 200. But the number of serious cases has continued climbing, raising concerns about hospital bed capacity.

As of Dec. 13, the number of COVID-19 patients in hospitals stood at 1,971 in Tokyo, also the highest since late May.