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There now seems to be a peer pressure shaped primarily by mainstream Japanese media and organizations with a strong political influence to conclude, without providing any convincing data to tell us what’s actually happening, that the coronavirus outbreak in Japan has already peaked and it’s about time to lift the state of emergency in most parts of the country.

A friend of mine’s colleague who lives in the town where I live had been suffering high fever and other cold symptoms combined with the loss of his sense of taste for multiple days went to a local hospital designated as infectious disease treatment institution. He consulted his doctor, an otolaryngologist from the hospital, and requested coronavirus testing. Surprisingly, his request was turned down. The doctor told him that his symptoms were just being caused by allergic rhinitis. So, he kept going to work because he didn’t want to be blamed by his boss and coworkers for missing works just for a mere nasal inflammation; a classic way of thinking among Japanese prioritizing work over anything else.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
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