Japan Virus Surge Linked to Gov’t Travel Campaign, Study Finds

A poster for the Japanese government's "Go To Travel" subsidy program is seen in Tokyo's Asakusa tourist area on Dec. 11, 2020. (Kyodo)

TOKYO (Kyodo) — The number of travel-associated novel coronavirus cases in Japan increased by nearly seven times after the government began a subsidy program aimed at promoting domestic tourism in July, a recent study found.

“Although the second epidemic wave in Japan had begun to decline by mid-August, enhanced domestic tourism may have contributed to increasing travel-associated COVID-19 cases,” Kyoto University researchers Hiroshi Nishiura and Asami Anzai said in the study, published Thursday in the Journal of Clinical Medicine.

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