Japan’s COVID-19 death rate is the lowest among the world’s wealthiest nations, with health experts pointing to continued mask wearing, extensive vaccination and an already healthy population as the core factors behind its success.

The population has continued to adhere to basic infection control measures, including avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated venues, as other parts of the world grapple with pandemic fatigue. And Japan’s measures have been bolstered by a robust vaccination program and free medical care.

But what truly sets it apart from many places, particularly Asian neighbors like China, is it’s managed to limit deaths without mandates and with few restrictions. The Constitution prevents imposing lockdowns backed by police actions, meaning that even during a state of emergency the government puts the onus on businesses and individuals to change their behavior.