• Staff report, Jiji

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Osaka Prefecture reported 883 new coronavirus cases on Friday, according to NHK, down slightly from a record 905 the day before.

Tokyo posted 537 new COVID-19 cases the same day, exceeding 500 for a third straight day, as the government is set to put the capital plus Kyoto and Okinawa prefectures under the novel coronavirus quasi-emergency state starting Monday.

The average number of daily new cases in Tokyo jumped to 440.9 in the week through Friday from the preceding week’s 381.4.

Of Friday’s new cases in Tokyo, 173 were confirmed among people in their 20s, 95 among those in their 30s and 94 among those in their 40s. Those age 65 or older accounted for 39 cases.

The number of infected people with severe symptoms under the metropolitan government’s criteria rose two from the previous day to 43.

Sizeable case totals were reported elsewhere in Kansai, with Hyogo logging 314 and Kyoto and Nara reporting 96 each.

Aichi Prefecture tallied 172 cases and Okinawa Prefecture 131.

Osaka's daily tally has now outpaced Tokyo's for 11 consecutive days.

On Thursday, Osaka saw its number of COVID-19 patients with severe symptoms rise by nine from Wednesday to 167, with its occupancy rate for beds for such patients rising to 74%.

Nationwide, new cases totaled 2,394 on Friday.

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