After Florida reported 15,300 new COVID-19 cases Sunday, a national record for the largest one-day update from a single state, state health officials tallied 12,624 new diagnoses Monday morning.
With the new diagnoses, 282,435 people, including 278,667 Florida residents, have tested positive in the Sunshine State. Had the state not reported 15,300 cases the day prior, Monday’s update would have constituted a new state record for new cases.
The upturn to kick off the week started after Gov. Ron DeSantis said the spread of new cases had “plateaued” over the last two weeks. But while the raw number of cases sets new highs, the percent positivity rate is inching downward.
For Sunday, the state’s report shows officials received results for 112,264 individuals’ tests. That followed 142,972 Saturday, both shattering the previous testing record of 95,331 individuals’ tests reported Thursday.
Among those people who were prospective new positive cases, 11.5% returned positive. That’s still above the state’s target 10% positivity rate, but below the 15%, 16% and even 18% the state hit over the past two weeks.
“We increased from the end of June into July, but it’s been plateaued for the last two weeks, which is a good sign,” DeSantis told reporters Saturday. “We’d rather be plateaued at 4%, but we didn’t want to see it continue to just go up and up.”
More than 2.6 million individuals have been tested in Florida as federal officials provide temporary testing assistance in Jacksonville, providing about 34,000 samples daily until they pack up the operation Wednesday.
The 12,624 new cases cover residents and non-residents confirmed positive cases Sunday morning to Monday morning. For Sunday only, the state diagnosed 12,343 positive residents.
The median age of those positive residents was 41, the oldest median age since state health officials began reporting the metric last month. Officials began including it after DeSantis said the age had plummeted from the 50s to the early 30s in the second wave as he argued the new spread was mostly affecting low-risk Floridians.
Last week alone, the state counted 69,546 new positive residents.
But while the Governor is focusing on the bright side of several thousands of new confirmed cases, deaths have started to tick upward. As of Monday morning, 4,277 residents and 104 non-residents have died in Florida, an increase of 35 residents.
Beginning Thursday, Florida recorded three straight days of more than 90 confirmed deaths. Sunday put an end to that streak, but the state typically reports fewer deaths on Sunday and Monday, the bulk of those days’ reports covering weekend data.
Another 227 residents were confirmed with COVID-19 cases in hospitals. Throughout the pandemic, 18,498 Floridians have been hospitalized.
At the time of publication, 8,085 people are hospitalized with a primary diagnosis of COVID-19 according to the Agency for Health Care Administration, 639 more than roughly 24 hours earlier. And 5,008, or 33 more, of the state’s 6,150 adult ICU beds are occupied, leaving 18.6% available. Some hospitals are starting to feel the crunch, with 51 showing full adult ICU wings.
Emergency departments are noticing a downward trend in recent days of the number of visits for symptoms tied to COVID-19 and the flu. But DeSantis warned that could be “more noise than signal,” instead bookmarking that metric as something to revisit in the coming days.
The state has asked the Federal Emergency Management Agency to make 1,500 nurses available to Florida’s hospitals. Until the federal assistance arrives, DeSantis said he would direct other nurses to Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami and to Tampa.
Florida’s county health departments told state officials they need 997 additional nurses to help in the COVID-19 response. The health departments in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties asked for an additional 400, 90 and 76 nurses, respectively.
The Department of Health reported 3,269 new cases in Miami-Dade County, where now 67,713 have tested positive. Broward County added 1,459 cases to reach 31,484 and Palm Beach County has 21,806 overall, including 1,788 more in Monday’s report.
Hillsborough County has 19,828 after receiving 678 new positives. Cases in Pinellas County are also on the rise with 11,442 total, an increase of 598.
Orange County, another resurgent area, now has 18,937 cases after counting 936 new positives.
Duval County reports 13,370 total cases, an increase of 506.
Lee County on Sunday became the latest county with more than 10,000 cases, now 10,344 after a rise of 221 cases
Editor’s note on methodology: The Florida Department of Health releases new data every morning around 10:45 a.m. The total number reported in those daily reports include the previous day’s totals as well as the most up to date data as of about 9:30 a.m.
Florida Politics uses the report-over-report increase to document the number of new cases each day because it represents the most up-to-date data available. Some of the more specific data, including positivity rates and demographics, considers a different data set that includes only cases reported the previous day.
This is important to note because the DOH report lists different daily totals than our methodology to show day-over-day trends. Their numbers do not include non-residents who tested positive in the state and they only include single-day data, therefore some data in the DOH report may appear lower than what we report.
Our methodology was established based on careful consideration among our editorial staff to capture both the most recent and accurate trends.