Currently, 19 prefectures have reached the bed occupancy situation at Stage 4, the worst level on the government's four-level scale.
TOKYO, Jan. 18 (Xinhua) -- The number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients with serious symptoms topped 970 to mark a record high in Japan, authorities said on Sunday.
Meanwhile, the number of patients recuperating at home reached 30,208 this week, according to the health ministry. The number of homebound patients as of Wednesday was 1.7 times that of the previous week amid a third wave of COVID-19 infections across the country.
On Sunday, 5,759 new COVID-19 cases and 49 deaths were reported across Japan. Tokyo confirmed an additional 1,592 infections with five new deaths, the metropolitan government said.
Currently, 19 prefectures have reached the bed occupancy situation at Stage 4, the worst level on the government's four-level scale, up eight from last week.
Tokyo has the highest number of homebound patients of 8,518, up over 3,000 compared to a week earlier.
The situation poses a challenging task to health authorities in terms of keeping a check on homebound patients in case a sudden deterioration in their conditions occurs, according to local media reports.