A day after state health officials confirmed more than 200 fatalities in a 24-hour period for the first time, Florida pushed the envelope again Thursday with 253 residents declared dead with COVID-19.
After three straight days of record-breaking death tolls, the Department of Health reports that 6,586 Floridians have died. Another 123 non-residents have died after officials revised that count down one from Wednesday.
While diagnoses have slowed in the state after peaking at 15,300 in one report earlier this month, the death toll’s growth has been accelerating in recent weeks. A week ago, the seven-day average death toll among residents was 120. On Thursday, that average was 151.
“These are tough things to see when you see fatalities come in,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said after Tuesday’s once-record 191 deaths.
In long-term care facilities, including nursing homes, officials counted another 85 deaths among residents and staff. In total, 2,921 people tied to those facilities have died.
“Obviously we’re working hard to protect the long-term care facilities,” the Governor added. “We still have fatalities related to long-term care, and then obviously to have families lose somebody is a big deal, and every one of that matters.”
The latest DOH report also showed 9,956 diagnoses for residents and non-residents from Wednesday morning to Thursday morning as the state reports a fifth consecutive day of fewer than 10,000 new cases. For all day Wednesday, 9,943 residents tested positive.
The percent positivity rate was 12% Wednesday, a slight decline from Wednesday. Over the last seven days, that rate has averaged 11.9%.
At the start of the month, the percent positivity rate averaged more than 15%. In the second half of May, that rate was below 3%.
Another 518 Floridians were hospitalized with COVID-19. Throughout the pandemic, 26,017 Floridians have been hospitalized.
The Agency for Health Care Administration reports 8,419 people are currently hospitalized with COVID-19, a decrease of 325 in the last 24 hours.
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.