1. Former LDP Policy Chief: Economic Measures Worth Tens of Trillions of Yen Are Urgently Needed
Kishida, who announced his candidacy for the LDP presidential election, expressed his recognition of the need to urgently compile economic measures worth tens of trillions of yen, including support for fixed costs such as rent based on the scale of business, as the effects of the CCP virus continue to linger, NHK Agency reported on Aug 29. After the meeting, Mr. Kishida told reporters, “There are a variety of cooperation and support funds available, but many of the measures are cut off, such as on a month-to-month basis, and people said it is difficult to foresee the future.”
2. Japan Eyes Mixed Use of CCP Virus Shots to Speed Vaccine Rollout
Japan is looking into the possibility of mixing shots of AstraZeneca Plc’s COVID-19 vaccine with those developed by other drugmakers in a bid to speed up its vaccine rollout, the minister in charge of vaccinations said on Sunday. Japan has previously relied on the Pfizer Inc /BioNTech SE, and Moderna Inc vaccines approved AstraZeneca’s vaccine in July and have secured two million doses.
“I have asked the health ministry to come up with an opinion about the use of AstraZeneca vaccines for the first dose and Pfizer’s with the second, or the AstraZeneca’s as the first shot and Moderna as second,” vaccine program chief Taro Kono said on the Fuji Television network. He said this could speed up the vaccination rollout by shortening the intervals between the first and second shots when using the AstraZeneca vaccine.
3. Contaminants Found in More Moderna Vaccine in Japan
Kyodo News reports on Aug 29 that the Gunma prefectural government said Sunday that foreign substances were discovered in Moderna Inc.’s vaccine, the latest in a series of contaminants in the company’s product reported in Japan over the past several days. Blackish foreign matter, less than 0.5 millimeters in size, was spotted during pre-inoculation inspections in a vial with a different lot number from those of the three lots suspended Thursday for use and another found Saturday in Okinawa containing black and pink substances. Gunma becomes the seventh prefecture to report the foreign matter in the Moderna vaccine, following Ibaraki, Saitama, Tokyo, Gifu, Aichi, and Okinawa.
4. The Number of Disbursements of the Maximum 300,000 Yen in Aid Was Less than Expected
The government’s “Grant for Independence of the Needy,” which the government began providing in July as a measure to support households whose income has declined due to the pandemic, has gotten off to a slow start. The local governments in charge of granting the money have voiced their opinion that the requirements for the granting of the money are too strict.
This aid package is for households that have borrowed up to the maximum amount of 2 million yen from the “special loan” program, which allows people to borrow government money without interest as living expenses, or for households that have been refused loans above a certain amount. The Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare (MHLW) has set aside a budget of about 58.9 billion yen based on the expectation that 200,000 households will be eligible for the aid, based on the amount of use of the special loan has exceeded 1 trillion yen. In contrast, as of the end of July, there were 38,366 applications nationwide. Of these, 19,595 were approved for payment, amounting to 981.1 million yen.
5. Minister of MHLW: It Will Be Difficult to Lift the Declaration on Sep 12
According to Asahi News, on September 29, Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) Minister Norihisa Tamura said, “Even if we take Tokyo as a case in point, we cannot lift the state of emergency declared for 21 prefectures, including Tokyo, unless the number of newly infected people per day falls below 500. Therefore, considering the current situation, it is probably quite difficult,” indicating that it would be difficult to lift the declaration by the deadline of September 12.
The government’s stance on lifting the emergency declaration is to make a comprehensive decision based on the number of newly infected people and the utilization rate of hospital beds. He also explained that it is important to increase the number of hospital beds in temporary medical facilities since increasing the number of beds in hospitals will considerably impact other general medical services.
6. Severe Cases of CCP Virus Total to 2,070, and 50 deaths; 19,311 Infected People
According to Yomiuri News, a total of 19,311 new cases were confirmed in all prefectures and airport quarantines. The number of people with serious illnesses increased by 10 from the previous day to 2,070, a record number for the 17th consecutive day. The number of deaths was 50. In Tokyo, 3,081 new infections were found, a decrease of 1,311 from a week ago and the seventh consecutive day below the same day of the previous week. The average number of new infections in the past week was 3784, down 20% from the previous week (4733). The number of severely infected people was also down by one from the previous day to 296.
【Himalaya Japan Galaxy- Alpha Planet】
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