Okinawa

Okinawa.Org Staff
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The First Infection Of Novel Coronavirus In Okinawa blog post broke the news of the first case of COVID-19 in Okinawa. Since then, the post was updated and used as a timeline for all coronavirus infection cases in Okinawa. As the cases grew, the blog post and subsequent discussion thread veered off-topic of being "the first case of coronavirus in Okinawa".

As such, we're clearing the blog post of the timeline and will be updating this thread with a new post each occurrence new occurrence instead. Furthermore, the discussions that were on topic, at the time, have been moved into this discussion thread.

You're free to discuss anything COVID-19 related in this thread, be it in Okinawa or worldwide.

Timeline of COVID-19 infection cases in Okinawa as well as other information:

InfectionsRecovered
Okinawa, Japan
18​
Kadena Ab
3​
Okinawa, Japan
4​
Kadena AB
?​


April 4, 2020 @ 1128 -- Six people were confirmed to to have the coronavirus in Okinawa. DISCUSS →

April 3, 2020 @ 1044 -- Two men, one in his 20s and the other in his 30s, found to be infected with COVID-19 on the morning of April 3. DISCUSS →

March 31, 2020 @ 1038 -- First confirmed case on Kadena AB from a US visitor. DISCUSS →

March 30, 2020 @ 0932 - A male in his 40s has been found to be infected with COVID-19 in Okinawa. It is still unclear whether it was brought in or was a community infection. DISCUSS →

March 28, 2020 @ 2258 -- Brig. Gen. Joel Carey, 18th Wing Commander on Kadena AB, confirms 2nd case of COVID-19. DISCUSS →

March 28, 2020 @ 1650 -- Kadena AB reports its first case of coronavirus at 1630. DISCUSS →

March 28, 2020 @ 1037 -- Two new infections in Okinawa; a woman in her 20s and a woman in her 30s. Okinawa has a total of 9 infections as of now. DISCUSS →
  • March 28, 2020 @ 1318 -- The woman in her 20s is a student that recently returned from New York, where it's likely that she contracted COVID-19. However, the woman in her 30s is likely a community spread of coronavirus from the male in his 30s who resides in Naha City as they were in close contact. DISCUSS →
March 26, 2020 @ 1056 -- A male in his 30s became the 7th person in Okinawa Prefecture to come down with the COVID-19 infection. DISCUSS →
  • March 26, 2020 @ 1246 -- The government is still trying to diligently determine whether it was a community infection of if is was contracted outside of Okinawa. However, Governor of Okinawa, Denny Tamaki, for the first time, requested that Japanese citizens or those under Japanese jurisdiction, use restraint and only travel outside of Okinawa if essential. DISCUSS →
March 24, 2020 @ 1047 -- Male in 40s found to be infected with COVID-19 marking the 5th case, 6th infection, in Okinawa. DISCUSS →
  • March 24, 2020 @ 1331 -- The man in his 40s stayed in Taiwan from March 7–9, 2020. He was symptomatic with a fever and diarrhea since the 18th but was not admitted until seeking medical attention a second time on the 21st when tested positive for COVID-19. DISCUSS →
March 23, 2020 @ 1712 -- A male in his 20s was confirmed to be the fourth case in Okinawa of the COVID-19 infection. This would bring the number up to a total of 5 infections in Okinawa due to the teenage girl's count remaining under the jurisdiction of another prefecture. DISCUSS →
  • March 24, 2020 @ 1052 -- The man in his 20s traveled to Belgium and is a foreign national to Japan that works for Hotel Royal Orion in Naha City.
March 21, 2020 @ 1500 -- A woman returning from Spain has tested positive for COVID-19 in Okinawa. Updates to come soon. DISCUSS →
  • March 29, 2020 @ 0530 -- teenager confirmed to have recovered and discharged from hospital quarantine. DISCUSS →
  • March 21, 2020 @ 1855 (Update) -- The teenager was tested in Mainland Japan. Okinawa prefecture explained that this case is not included in the count of Okinawa infections—which remains at 3, even though she is being treated locally—because airports around Japan fall under the jurisdiction of the prefecture that the test was conducted in. DISCUSS →
February 20, 2020 @ 1723 -- Third confirmed case of coronavirus in Okinawa; man in 80s. DISCUSS →

February 19, 2020 @ 1826 -- Second confirmed case of COVID-19 in Okinawa; male taxi driver in his 60s. Had no contact with first infected, but did have passengers on board from the Diamond Princess when it docked in Naha City. DISCUSS →

February 16, 2020 @ 0900 -- Other taxi drivers and citizens that are concerned about whether they may be infected and asymptomatic shows the poor state that Japan and Okinawa are in as only the Prefectural Institute of Public Health and Environment in Okinawa can carry out such tests for COVID-19 at a rate of 9 per day, which is roughly the same as other prefectures. DISCUSS →

February 15, 2020 @ 2220 -- Government of Japan to accelerate testing and treatment measures amid a potential "domestic epidemic" as COVID-19 has reportedly spread to 11 of the 47 prefectures in Japan, to include Okinawa, with the Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare stating that outbreaks are inevitable in the future. DISCUSS →

February 15, 2020 @ 0700 -- As discussed by Governor Tamaki, 15 non-stop flights between Okinawa and 5 Chinese cities per week have been canceled as well as 50 of 87 flights between Naha International Airport and Shanghai. Additionally, the ports closed off to cruise ships meant to also dock in Naha, Okinawa; Nakagusuku, Okinawa; Ishigaki Island, Okinawa; and Miyako Island, Okinawa. This is all in an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19 in Okinawa. DISCUSS →

February 14, 2020 @ 1918 -- Seven elderly welfare centers will be closed for up to two weeks amid the news of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) appearing in Naha City in order to prevent the transmission among the people more likely to be affected.

February 14, 2020 @ 1811 -- Governor of Okinawa, Denny Tamaki, reports that the taxi driver is in stable condition and they are conducting health and wellness observations on potential contacts that the taxi driver may have had after becoming physically ill on February 5, 2020.

February 14, 2020 @ 1748 -- Naha City Mayor, Mikiko Shiroma, announces a new coronavirus management headquarters. She urges citizens to be careful and not to worry.

February 14, 2020 @ 1552 -- The first case of coronavirus appeared in Okinawa. The infected person was identified as being a taxi driver in her late 60s that transported four Chinese tourists to sightsee what was only described as an area of being farther south in Okinawa.

Bookmark this page for live updates about the COVID-19 coverage in Okinawa and join the discussion below!
 
The views expressed on this page by users and staff are their own, not those of Okinawa.Org.
Last edited:
OP
Okinawa

Okinawa

Okinawa.Org Staff
Okinawa.Org Staff
Official Account
February 14, 2020 @ 1748 -- Naha City Mayor, Mikiko Shiroma, announces a new coronavirus management headquarters. Urges citizens to be careful and not to worry.
 
OP
Okinawa

Okinawa

Okinawa.Org Staff
Okinawa.Org Staff
Official Account
February 14, 2020 @ 1811 -- Governor of Okinawa, Denny Tamaki, reports that the taxi driver is in stable condition and they are conducting health and wellness observations on potential contacts that the taxi driver may have had after becoming physically ill on February 5, 2020.
 
OP
Okinawa

Okinawa

Okinawa.Org Staff
Okinawa.Org Staff
Official Account
February 14, 2020 @ 1918 -- Seven elderly welfare centers will be closed for up to two weeks amid the news of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) appearing in Naha City in order to prevent the transmission among the people more likely to be affected.
 
OP
Okinawa

Okinawa

Okinawa.Org Staff
Okinawa.Org Staff
Official Account
February 15, 2020 @ 0700 -- As discussed by Governor Tamaki, 15 non-stop flights between Okinawa and 5 Chinese cities per week have been canceled as well as 50 of 87 flights between Naha International Airport and Shanghai. Additionally, the ports closed off to cruise ships meant to also dock in Naha, Okinawa; Nakagusuku, Okinawa; Ishigaki Island, Okinawa; and Miyako Island, Okinawa. This is all in an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19 in Okinawa.
 

David

Founder
Okinawa.Org Staff
February 15, 2020 @ 0700 -- As discussed by Governor Tamaki, 15 non-stop flights between Okinawa and 5 Chinese cities per week have been canceled as well as 50 of 87 flights between Naha International Airport and Shanghai. Additionally, the ports closed off to cruise ships meant to also dock in Naha, Okinawa; Nakagusuku, Okinawa; Ishigaki Island, Okinawa; and Miyako Island, Okinawa. This is all in an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19 in Okinawa.
I was under the impression that either the company or government of Okinawa knew that there was a passenger that disembarked in Hong Kong which tested positive for COVID-19 on January 25th, days prior to the passengers disembarking in Naha on February 1st.

On the previous voyage, a guest from Hong Kong, embarked in Yokohama on January 20, sailed one segment of the itinerary, and disembarked in Hong Kong on January 25. He visited a local Hong Kong hospital, six days after leaving the ship, where he later tested positive for coronavirus on February 1. While on the ship he did not visit the ship’s medical centre to report any symptoms or illness. The hospital reports that he is in stable condition and the family members traveling with him remain symptom-free
Source: Princess Cruises: Diamond Princess Coronavirus & Quarantine Updates - Notices & Advisories

And on the February 1st:
The ship arrived in Naha at 1:30 p.m. and left for Yokohama at around 11 p.m. that day.
Source: Naha goes on high alert, days after visit by virus-hit cruise ship | The Japan Times

From what I recollect, they couldn't stop them from getting off in Naha because 'there was no law in doing so' (loosely translated talk).

Now; now, you want to cancel flights and cruise ships from entering because of possible further transmission of the novel coronavirus in Okinawa? Except... you're worried about the economic impact it'll have and not reaching the goal of exceeding 10,000,000 million tourists to Okinawa in 2020?

I think someone's priorities were misdirected on the 1st and they are still somewhat misguided now as the people of Okinawa should have had protection against this thing from the beginning.

Maybe, had common sense been used, COVID-19 would've appeared in Okinawa much later, or perhaps, not at all—at least closer to the possibility of reaching a vaccination first, perhaps?
 

BBZ

New member
judging by the fact that within 30 mins of me being at Sunabe sea wall today 5 random people sneezed and not one of them covered their mouth, if this thing gets out, it will take a toll.
 

David

Founder
Okinawa.Org Staff
judging by the fact that within 30 mins of me being at Sunabe sea wall today 5 random people sneezed and not one of them covered their mouth, if this thing gets out, it will take a toll.
😬😬😬

Well, there goes this and a new theory added that people are probably ignoring the advice of a good 20-second washing after touching surfaces too...
 
OP
Okinawa

Okinawa

Okinawa.Org Staff
Okinawa.Org Staff
Official Account
February 15, 2020 @ 2220 -- Government of Japan to accelerate testing and treatment measures amid a potential "domestic epidemic" as COVID-19 has reportedly spread to 11 of the 47 prefectures in Japan, to include Okinawa, with the Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare stating that outbreaks are inevitable in the future.
 
OP
Okinawa

Okinawa

Okinawa.Org Staff
Okinawa.Org Staff
Official Account
February 16, 2020 @ 0900 -- Other taxi drivers and citizens that are concerned about whether they may be infected and asymptomatic shows the poor state that Japan and Okinawa are in as only the Prefectural Institute of Public Health and Environment in Okinawa can carry out such tests for COVID-19 at a rate of 9 per day, which is roughly the same as other prefectures.
 
OP
Okinawa

Okinawa

Okinawa.Org Staff
Okinawa.Org Staff
Official Account
February 19, 2020 @ 1826 -- Second confirmed case of COVID-19 in Okinawa; male taxi driver in his 60s. Had no contact with first infected, but did have passengers on board from the Diamond Princess when it docked in Naha City.
 

Sterlin34

New member
First, I wanted to say thank you for providing some kind of local coverage on this. My husband is a contractor here in Okinawa and we get absolutely zero information from the military or his company. I am very grateful that I stumbled upon your site as we had no idea what was happening locally. It alarms me, the amount of people that are completely oblivious to what is happening with the spread of this virus and the lack of real news to be found covering it. I understand not wanting to create a panic in the populace but wouldn't an informed public be better equipped to deal with this? If anyone is interested in the global news about this, a YouTube channel called Peak Prosperity has been reporting the illness, science behind it, numbers and potential economic impact of this outbreak. Please keep up the news about local developments, it is very much appreciated. As we saw over the weekend, Italy went from 3 cases to over 130 cases in 3 days.
 

David

Founder
Okinawa.Org Staff
First, I wanted to say thank you for providing some kind of local coverage on this. My husband is a contractor here in Okinawa and we get absolutely zero information from the military or his company.
Thank you for visiting our site, albeit for information regarding COVID-19; it's good to know that we are having an impact locally, be it in the Expat community or those brought here through the terms of SOFA. I hope you end up sticking around long after this outbreak is over. :)

As far as the military and contractor not knowing, I don't believe that is the case. I am quite certain that, at least at the top echelons of the military, they know. That said, there's so much bureaucracy involved in determining whether it's accurate, going up levels above or level to them rank/department wise before they can announce anything.

Not knocking the process, as there is a language barrier, but a great example of my theory can be seen in this post (screenshot attached):


As you can see, they reported on February 19, 2020, at 1525 that there was no other case. However, at 1826 it was confirmed that there was a third case with no further reporting from Kadena AB until 24 hours later, or, 21 hours after confirmation. That tells me, if you get news, you will always have a delay—why that is, is unknown to me as you should be informed around the clock to ensure preventative measures are taken within that window.
I am very grateful that I stumbled upon your site as we had no idea what was happening locally.
Our site provides great news in regards to COVID-19. However, not to scare you, there are plenty of places outdoors in our forum Okinawa Pin Drops that are isolated, but can still give you a sense of Okinawa. I, myself, would not be afraid to travel to most of them on any day.

Learning some history about Okinawa through these sites should keep your mind occupied enough to not worry about an epidemic happening in Okinawa, giving you enough time to not be completely bored until things blow over. Just prepare for the journey with some alcohol hand sanitizer and wash your hands in the "public" restrooms if you can (outdoor ones) prior to using it too as well as washing your face if you can, as advised by multiple sources.

If you feel safer indoors, you can expand your Japanese vocabulary by playing Shiritori, a fun game of learning a word a day. Put it to use after you feel like it's safe to travel around and experience the culture more. :)
It alarms me, the amount of people that are completely oblivious to what is happening with the spread of this virus and the lack of real news to be found covering it.
This is alarming to me as well: locally and abroad. The coverage of it seems minimal while the numbers seem to be increasing at a rate where it can't be ignored.
I understand not wanting to create a panic in the populace but wouldn't an informed public be better equipped to deal with this?
To some degree, yes. But if you have everyone rushing for food, etc., that should be on hand prior to something like this, in my opinion, I believe you have the opportunity for it to jump hosts as someone could be asymptomatic and spread it in the public frenzy of a mob trying to stock up.
If anyone is interested in the global news about this, a YouTube channel called Peak Prosperity has been reporting the illness, science behind it, numbers and potential economic impact of this outbreak.
Thank you, I will have to look into it. :)

However, if you have any specific videos that you'd like to share, you can always click the "..." (Insert) button, media, and paste the YouTube video link there (from 'share' in the YT app 'share' and copy to clipboard or copy/paste from a browser).
Please keep up the news about local developments, it is very much appreciated.
We will keep up as local news reports. I've decided against reporting each individual case if someone gets better from the illness, as we know there's only a 2% mortality rate, and all 3 could make it out unscathed. However, the first confirmed case was in fact twice tested negative for COVID-19 and might have (or was already) been discharged as of yesterday.
As we saw over the weekend, Italy went from 3 cases to over 130 cases in 3 days.
This one rocked me as I check WHO.int sitreps after reading this and between yesterday and today, there were 67 new cases in Italy. :eek:

I would presume the cases in Japan are much higher than what is being reported. This is because, in my opinion, Japan is trying to save face by reporting only those infected that seek medical attention. That said, the criteria for seeking attention is a fever for 4-days.

But in that 4-day window: what are those people doing? Are they well enough to go about normal life, going to work, school events, etc.? Are they self-quarantining themselves? Are they with family members who can be asymptomatic hosts themselves?

Those questions can only be answered when and if there is a flood of people at each clinic needing dire attention because of pneumonia. Then, Japan can no longer deny that the numbers of infected are much lower than they appear.
 
OP
Okinawa

Okinawa

Okinawa.Org Staff
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I would love to know too. PA announcement just a minute ago and I could only tell that Coronavirus was said. I wish I spoke Japanese.
They are still doing daily testing of very few samples that meet the criteria (X to XX) and releasing updates per day.

However, it still remains at 3 with the initial taxi driver (first case) from the Diamond Princess, which has since recovered; the second taxi driver from the same ship, last known to be severe in severe condition without any updates we've come across; and the farmer in Tomigusuku with no known connection to either case.
 
OP
Okinawa

Okinawa

Okinawa.Org Staff
Okinawa.Org Staff
Official Account
Any updates on number of cases here on Okinawa?
It is still the three cases. Though, they remain testing those that fit the criteria to be tested.

We will announce on our Page and post when another case tests positive.
 

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