Over 40% in Japan Had COVID Antibodies during 8th Wave

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
The Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — The proportion of people with COVID-19 antibodies in Japan has risen to 42.3%, up sharply from 26.5% in November last year, a survey released by the health ministry Monday showed.

The latest survey was conducted on Feb. 19-27, when the country was in its eighth infection wave, with analysis of blood samples collected from about 13,000 people aged between 16 and 69, who were blood donors.

By prefecture, the proportion was highest in Fukuoka, at 59.4%, up sharply from 29.2% in the previous survey in November, and exceeding the 58.0% marked in Okinawa, which had the highest rate in the previous survey, at 46.6%.

Four other prefectures also had readings above 50% — 52.5% in Saga, 51.8% in Aichi, 51.5% in Kagoshima and 50.2% in Osaka.

The rate was lowest in Iwate, at 27.4%, followed by Fukushima, at 31.7%, Niigata, at 33.5%, and Yamanashi and Nagano, at 34.9% each.

The survey also found that the rate tends to be lower among elderly people than it is young people.