Japan’s coronavirus response rated mediocre by Economist’s research unit

Japan received a mediocre rating for its response to the novel coronavirus epidemic in a report by the research arm of British magazine The Economist.

The report, released Wednesday, showed that Japan scored 2.89 points out of 4 points in its novel coronavirus response, index and was in the “fair” category of the assessment by the Economist Intelligence Unit. The assessment covered virus response measures in advanced countries.

Japan received a poor mark in terms of the number of coronavirus detection tests, but scored highly regarding its health care system and coronavirus death toll.

The country placed 13th out of 21 member states of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, tying with Switzerland. New Zealand marked the highest score, at 3.67 points, while Belgium took the lowest score at 2.11 points.

The report comes as work is underway to evaluate coronavirus policies of countries around the world in preparation for an expected second wave of virus infections.

Australia, Denmark, Germany and others joined New Zealand in the group of countries rated as “very good.” The “good” assessment was given to countries including the United States, which has the world’s highest number of infections and related deaths, and France.

South Korea, Sweden and others had the “fair” rating along with Japan. Belgium, the United Kingdom, Spain and Italy were rated “poor.”

The EIU analyzed the “quality of response” based on the number of coronavirus tests per million people, the number of excess deaths per million people and the provision of noncoronavirus health care. It also considered other factors, such as the proportion of the population that was elderly, to produce an index on a 4-point scale.

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