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The Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan

理事長 上昌広

Why the Government's COVID Response went astray

Masahiro Kami, Executive director, Medical Governance Research Institute

14:00-15:00 Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Language: The speech and Q & A will be in Japanese with English interpretation.

Japan's handling of the COVID-19 crisis has been a success by many measures. The emphasis on avoiding the Three C's (crowds, closed spaces and close contact), the public's willingness to wear masks, and limited lockdowns have kept the COVID toll relatively low. Japan has had 13,800 COVID-19 deaths among 760,000 cases, per-capita rates far below those of the United States and most countries in Europe.

But many questions surround Japan’s COVID-19 containment efforts, from the strategy for limiting testing to those with clear symptoms to the late and slow rollout of the vaccination program. Physician and medical system reform advocate Masaharu Kami will come to the FCCJ to discuss how and why the government's COVID response went astray and the health risks posed by the upcoming Olympics.

A frequent critic of Japan's medical establishment, Kami is executive director of the Tokyo-based NGO Medical Governance Research Institute, which strives to improve the practice of medicine in Japan. A physician who graduated from University of Tokyo, Kami specialized in internal medicine. He was on the staff of Todai's Institute of Medical Science before assuming his current position.


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