State health officials reported 777 new COVID-19 cases Sunday, raising the caseload of confirmed cases to 45,588.
The Department of Health (DOH) also confirmed nine deaths related to the novel coronavirus in the last 24 hours, all residents, raising the state’s death toll to 2,049, including 1,973 residents. On Saturday, the state crossed 2,000 deaths and May 4 became the most deadly day recorded with 57 resident deaths, edging out the 56 dead residents confirmed for April 17.
Another 83 residents and one non-resident in hospitals tested positive, raising the count of people sent to hospitals with the disease to 8,478.
DOH only counted eight new deaths among residents and staff in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities, where 883 have died in total. Now 524 long-term care facilities have residents with active COVID-19 cases.
The department received a record 29,608 tests Saturday, up from the previous daily high of 23,904 set Monday. After seeing a surge in the percent positivity rate among new tests Friday to 6.96%, revised down from 7.05%, that rate Saturday was down to 4.26%, closer to the recent average that has been below 4%.
The majority of new cases in recent weeks have come from the state’s hot spot counties in South Florida, which Gov. Ron DeSantis held back from reopening with the rest of the state. On Monday, Palm Beach County reopened, and Miami-Dade and Broward counties will reopen this Monday when the state enters its “Full Phase One.”
In the last 24 hours, 292 people in Miami-Dade County tested positive, raising the overall COVID-19 caseload to 15,658 people. Two people died there since Saturday’s report, raising the death toll to 570.
Broward County registered 42 new cases, raising its total to 6,243, and one person died, lifting the death toll there to 301. Palm Beach County now has 4,524 cases after DOH showed 84 new cases along with still 286 total fatalities.
The other counties to cross 1,000 COVID-19 cases are Orange with 1,655, Hillsborough with 1,614, Lee with 1,456, Duval with 1,284 and Pinellas with 1,022.
On Friday, the Governor outlined the next reopening step which let restaurants seat up to 50% of their capacity with retail and museums also matching the 50% cap. Gyms will also reopen, and counties can submit their plans to reopen vacation rentals on a county-by-county basis.
The results of more than 35,000 COVID-19 tests ordered by AdventHealth and performed by a third-party lab are unreliable, with the majority of the questionable tests having been conducted in Florida, the company said Saturday. According to the health care system, the situation has created “unacceptable delays.”
DOH has received the results of 653,081 individuals. Another 1,479 awaited results from DOH-coordinated labs, but thousands more likely await private testing currently unknown to the state.