April 8 – According to a report by Kyodo News Agency of Japan, Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare announced on the 8th that six people, including employees, were infected with the novel coronavirus, many of whom attended the dinner of the Old Health Bureau until late at night in late March. The health clinic is investigating the infection route. According to the Ministry of Health and Labour, multiple cases of infection in the same department may be de facto collective infection.
Of the six infected people, five of them were staff of the elderly health care department, and one was transferred to organizations outside the Ministry of Health and Labour on April 1. This person had a fever from April 3 to 6 and tested positive for COVID-19. The five people left in the Ministry of Health and Labour are currently not working.
In addition, many of the infected cases attended the dinner party on March 24. At that time, the dinner place was the restaurant in Ginza, Tokyo, in which was attended by 23 staff from the Ministry of Labour and Welfare, which lasted from 19:15 to around 23:50 p.m. There is no acrylic board in the store, and most participants take off their masks during the dialogue.
Because the dinner party coincided with Tokyo’s continued to ask restaurants to shorten their business hours due to the expansion of the epidemic, both the political parties in the government and opposition criticized it as a damage to credit. On March 30, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare punished the relevant personnel, so that the then director of the elderly health department who hosted the dinner belonged to the minister’s office, in fact, changed and the salary was reduced. Other participants were reprimanded, warned, etc.
In an interview, the Ministry of Health and Labour also said that in addition to the above six people, two staff members of the Old Health Bureau also have fever and other symptoms and are waiting for the test results. The Ministry of Health and Labour said that it would not announce the total number of people tested and whether they were hospitalized.
Kenhisa Mugatamura repeatedly apologized for the dinner party at the Senate Committee and said “an apology again”.
At the same time, the health clinic is investigating the infection route, and the causal relationship with dinner parties and restaurants is not clear. According to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, “so far it has not been recognized as a collective infection”, but there are multiple cases of infection in the same department, which may be de facto collective infection.