From Jiji Press
January 17 2022
TOKYO – Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida pledged in his policy speech Monday to do all he can to avoid situations that may put strains on the country’s medical system amid the rapid spread of the omicron coronavirus variant.
Kishida said in his first annual policy speech before the Diet, Japan’s parliament, that he plans to work on “major reforms” of the economy and society, centered around decarbonization efforts aimed at growth.
The prime minister told both chambers of Diet that he will engage with all his strength to overcome the novel coronavirus crisis, basing his efforts on citizens’ “trust and sympathy.”
“We must avoid at all costs emergency situations that may put a squeeze on hospital beds,” Kishida said, following a shortage of hospital beds amid the fifth wave of COVID-19 cases that hit the country last summer and led to many being unable to get hospitalized and dying at home.
He pledged to boost medical treatments for people recovering at home or at lodging facilities, and to accelerate booster vaccinations, noting that he plans to “calmly advance responses (against the omicron variant) based on the latest information, without excessive fear.”