Weekly Number of Flu Cases Surges in Japan

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — The number of new flu cases reported by about 5,000 medical institutions across Japan in the week to Sunday rose 1.57 times from the preceding week to 34,665, the health ministry said Friday.

It is unusual for a flu epidemic not to subside by summer and to spread rapidly in September.

The current situation can be attributed to the weakening of people’s immune systems after COVID-19 prevention measures also curbed flu infections, and to recent rises in domestic and international travel.

The average number of new cases per medical institution surged to 7.03 from 4.48 in the Sept. 4-10 week.

By prefecture, the average number was highest in Okinawa, at 20.85, and also above 10 in Saitama, Chiba, Tokyo, Tokushima, Ehime and Saga. Only three prefectures—Aomori, Iwate and Yamagata—had figures below 1, the threshold for an outbreak.