TOKYO: The cumulative number of novel coronavirus cases in Japan topped seven million Saturday, about only three weeks after the total surpassed six million March 18.
Due to the spread of the highly transmissible omicron variant of the virus, new COVID-19 cases started to shoot up again in January, when the sixth wave of infections began.
The cumulative number exceeded two million Jan. 20 and topped three million two weeks later. Then, the pace of growth slowed, but the daily infection count has remained high in the country.
On Saturday, 52,741 people were newly found infected with the novel coronavirus, including 8,102 in Tokyo, 4,200 in the western prefecture of Osaka and 3,792 in Kanagawa Prefecture, just south of Tokyo. Nagano Prefecture, central Japan, confirmed 740 new cases, a record daily high there.
According to the health ministry, the number of COVID-19 patients in serious condition stood at 489 as of Saturday, up by five from Friday. Forty-nine COVID-19 fatalities were confirmed Saturday, including 15 in Osaka and six in Tokyo.