Tokyo reports fewest coronavirus cases in 4 weeks

On Monday, the number of newly confirmed coronavirus cases in Tokyo was 39, marking the first day in nearly a month with fewer than 40 infections and the second straight with fewer than 100.

To date, a total of 3,947 cases have been confirmed in Tokyo. 65.2% of patients have experienced mild to moderate symptoms, 2.4% have seen severe symptoms, and 2.7% of cases have led to death. 29.7% of patients had been discharged.

Graph: Severity of symptoms in Tokyo

Despite the dip, Hokkaido University professor Nishiura Hiroshi, one of the infectious disease experts guiding the government's response to the outbreak, says it’s too early for optimism. He says measures need to be kept in place until we see a more marked decline in cases.

Tokyo governor Koike Yuriko has expressed a similar belief, saying the city cannot afford to ease up just yet. She says residents have to remain careful because the effects of their efforts won’t be evident for two weeks.

The streets of Japan were eerily quiet over the weekend as people obeyed stay at home orders and largely stayed away from popular destinations. (1:45)

Hokkaido, in northern Japan, recorded 35 new cases on Monday. It is seeing a second wave of infection.

The prefecture was the hardest hit in the early months of the pandemic. The governor declared a state of emergency on February 28th after confirmed cases topped 70. The declaration was lifted three weeks later after a decline in infections. But the numbers have started to tick up again and the governor issued another emergency declaration on April 12.

Graph: COVID-19 daily cases in Hokkaido

Three weeks have passed since the government declared a state of emergency for Tokyo and six other prefectures. Officials are consulting with experts and monitoring developments around the country as it considers whether to extend the declaration beyond May 6th.