The Olympic Games are scheduled to begin in about two months in Tokyo, Japan, and now a group representing about 6,000 primary care physicians in that country is openly asking the prime minister to cancel the games.
In an open letter to Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, the Tokyo Medical Practitioners Association writes they “have their hands full” and worry about hospital capacity with a possible outbreak triggered by the international event.
The 2020 Games have already been postponed a year because of the coronavirus pandemic. Suga has insisted the games will proceed as scheduled, without foreign spectators.
The association says not allowing foreign spectators is not enough.
“We strongly request that the authorities convince the IOC (International Olympic Committee) that holding the Olympics is difficult and obtain its decision to cancel the Games,” the letter posted May 14 reads.
Other health experts and medical groups in Japan and other countries have voiced their concerns about the safety of holding the Olympic Games right now.
While Japan has avoided an explosive wave of coronavirus cases like other countries, they have received criticism for their vaccine rollout.
About 3.5% of Japan’s population has been vaccinated, according to Reuters.