Signs of hope in Northeast Florida as fewer new coronavirus cases roll in
A $63 million 'innovation corridor' could be coming downtown. (Image via Jacksonville Business Journal)

The overnight count of new viruses dropped significantly from Thursday's reports.

Coronavirus data coming out of Northeast Florida Friday is showing signs of hope. The five-county area on Florida’s First Coast added just 19 additional cases of COVID-19 overnight, according to the Florida Department of Health. By comparison, the region posted 60 new cases of coronavirus Thursday evening.

No new deaths were reported in the region Friday morning.

Only two new hospitalizations were reported Friday, one each from Duval and Clay counties.

Duval County accounted for 14 of the new cases, rising from 595 Thursday to 609 Friday morning. Clay County posted four new cases and Nassau County just one while St. Johns and Baker counties remained unchanged.

As the numbers started to stabilize this week, Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry said he is starting to consider post-crisis approaches. However he stressed the current outbreak is not yet near an end.

Curry said Thursday that there’s still much work to do before any guidelines or restrictions are eased in Jacksonville. He continues to tout a financial relief program he signed into action Tuesday for local businesses. The program, in conjunction with Jacksonville-based VyStar Credit Union, provides loans, some of which could be forgiven, for small businesses.

“As we come out of this, I’m looking at ways to provide relief to people, not to add additional burdens onto them,” Curry said. “I am having no conversations right now or thoughts about putting more tax burden on the people of Jacksonville, people are suffering right now.

“We’ve got to find other creative ways to help people get back on their feet to make sure they have jobs and be able to sustain themselves and their families,” Curry said.

Also this week, Andrew Boselli, son of retired Jacksonville Jaguars great Tony Boselli, announced he was recovering from COVID-19. The younger Boselli is an offensive lineman for the Florida State Seminoles. Both spent several days in the intensive care unit when he was suffering from the virus.

Across Florida, there are now 17,531 confirmed cases of coronavirus, 390 people have died and 2,360 have been hospitalized.

Nationally, 467,184 people have tested positive for COVID-19 while 16,703 have died.

Drew Dixon

Drew Dixon is a journalist of 40 years who has reported in print and broadcast throughout Florida, starting in Ohio in the 1980s. He is also an adjunct professor of philosophy and ethics at three colleges, Jacksonville University, University of North Florida and Florida State College at Jacksonville. You can reach him at [email protected]


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