First Coast region exceeds 20,000 COVID-19 cases, Jacksonville tops 15K
Jacksonville honors Juneteenth by lighting the Acosta Bridge in celebration.

Acosta Bridge Light Test  - May 2020
The region has ramped up testing in recent days.

The First Coast broke the 20,000 mark for coranvirus cases while Jacksonville blew past 15,000, according  to Florida Department of Health data released Friday.

The five-county Northeast Florida region added 897 new cases of COVID-19 Thursday to Friday morning, arriving at a total of 20,686 cases. The First Coast added five new deaths for a total of 157. The region added 19 new hospitalizations for a total of 794.

Jacksonville now has a total of 15,641 cases of coronavirus, an increase of 649 over Wednesday. The Wednesday case count was a record breaker for a single-day at 840 new cases.  Jacksonville accounted for four new coronavirus deaths Thursday for a total of 93.

The increased number of cases in Jacksonville comes with some additional testing sites in recent weeks. The city’s Westside testing location along with its Northside facility will cease operations after Friday. A coastal community testing center opened this week in Neptune Beach and two temporary walk-up testing sites were added at Central Plaza on W. Sixth Street and another at Inspire to Rise on Timuquana Road.

Elsewhere on the First Coast, St. Johns County added 92 new cases Thursday for a total of 2,270. St. Johns also recorded an additional death for a total of 15 and three new hospitalizations for a total of 116.

Clay County recorded 1,900 total cases of COVID-19 as of Friday morning, up 109 over Wednesday. There were no changes in deaths or hospitalizations in Clay.

Nassau County added 34 new cases Thursday for a total of 660, no new deaths and one new hospitalization for a total of 38. Baker County added 13 new cases and no changes in other data.

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.

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]


One comment

  • Sonja Fitch

    July 18, 2020 at 6:01 am

    Shut down the state! Cancel the RNC! 1 in 3 children are testing positive! Community spread? Dying? Long term health problems? We do not Know the answers yet about our children’s risks! Shut down the state!

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