Arab News Japan
TOKYO: Japan’s Prime Minister SUGA Yoshihide announced new measures to deal with increasing infections of COVID-19 in Japan, including suspending parts of “Go to Travel” and “Go to Eat” campaigns.
Suga said in a live broadcast on Friday evening that people are urged to refrain from using the travel campaign to Osaka and Sapporo cities. Suga said that measures will be taken so businesses and people will not be burdened by cancelation fees.
Tokyo reported on Friday 570 new coronavirus infections, pushing up its monthly tally for November to the highest on record.
The Japanese PM also said that medical services are being over-extended with the increase of coronavirus infections, so that over the next three weeks, intensive measures need to be taken over the areas where the infection is rapidly increasing.
Suga pointed out that the spread of infection was serious in connection to dining facilities as sale of discount coupons under a state-run subsidy program, dubbed “Go To Eat,” aimed at encouraging dining out.
“Starting from today, in addition to Sapporo city, shortened operating hours will be requested for restaurants, dining establishments in Tokyo, Osaka, and Nagoya cities,” Suga said.
Regarding Go to Eat campaign, ten prefectures have decided to suspend the sales of new vouchers that are issued by the government to subsidize partly the bills in order to activate the economy. In nine prefectures, restrictions have been placed on dinners of 4 and less than 4 people.
In order to respond to the strain on medical care services, Suga urged local governments to secure more hospital beds, and to give priority to the sever patients who need to be hospitalized.
A total of 1200 experts were arranged to help public health centers’ staff.
And in order to prevent the number of severely ill patients from increasing, intensive tests will be conducted on residents of elderly care homes and workers there. He also called on the relevant cabinet ministers to work closely with local governments on the measures in order to protect the lives and livelihoods of the people of Japan.