Exceeding the previous record of 17,631 in Japan’s capital on Friday, Tokyo reported 21,576 new cases of Omicron, dimming hopes that an omicron-fueled wave of infections is peaking out in Japan.
The closely watched usage rate of hospital beds reserved for COVID-19 patients edged up to 51.4 percent. Officials previously said that a state of emergency would be needed if the rate reached 50 percent, but now say the decision will depend on the number of serious cases and other factors.
The capital and most of Japan are now under curbs to contain spread of the virus.
The western prefecture of Osaka reported 11,171 new infections, down from a record 11,881 on Tuesday.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno said on Wednesday the government is not planning to declare a state of emergency but remains vigilant.