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Experts’ panel acknowledges insufficiency of Japan’s PCR testing

  • May 5, 2020
  • , Asahi, Yomiuri, Nikkei
  • JMH Summary

Tuesday’s Yomiuri, Asahi, and Nikkei wrote that a GOJ panel of medical experts released a report on Monday concluding that Japan’s PCR testing for the new coronavirus has been insufficient by international standards. The papers wrote that Japan has conducted 187.8 tests per 100,000 people, while Italy has done 3,159 tests and the United States has done 1,752.3 tests per 100,000 people. The panel said that the dearth of tests stems from such factors as the excessive burden on local health offices that give guidance to potential coronavirus patients before testing and staff shortages at public health institutes that conduct the testing. The panel recommended expanding regional outpatient treatment and screening centers, ensuring a secure supply of protective gear, and training more staff to collect samples. Nikkei wrote that Prime Minister Abe also told reporters on Monday that he recognizes that PCR testing has been inadequate in Japan because personnel-related bottlenecks have hindered the expansion of PCR testing.

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