Pinellas County’s COVID-19 positivity rate plummets below 5%

CORONAVIRUS ST PETE (2) (Large)
The seven day average positivity rate is down to just over 6%.

Pinellas County’s positive test rate for new COVID-19 diagnoses is almost at St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman’s target 5%.

As of results returned Wednesday, the area’s seven-day rolling average positivity rate was just over 6%. That drop is largely fueled by Wednesday’s single day results, which returned just 3.7% first-time positive results.

That came also as testing rebounded in Pinellas County after some testing site closures over the weekend due to the threat of Hurricane Isaias. Pinellas County returned 4,235 tests Wednesday, up from 2,066 Tuesday and 2,048 Monday.

Meanwhile, the county confirmed just 156 new cases from Wednesday morning to Thursday morning, bringing the county’s pandemic-wide total to 17,358.

There were also only two new deaths reported, showing another potential slow down in fatal outcomes, though the county still has a mortality rate higher than the state average at 2.7% compared to 1.5% statewide.

Hospital capacity is also on the rise with 21% of all adult intensive care unit beds still available.

Hillsborough hasn’t recovered from the latest spike to the same extent as Pinellas, but its data points are also showing signs of improvement.

The county’s adult ICU capacity is up to 7% with 28 of 364 beds available. That’s up from just 3% earlier in the week.

The positivity rate is also on the decline. At 6.8% Wednesday, it was the eighth day in a row the rate has been below 10%. The rate has only been above 10% for three of the last 14-days.

The county only confirmed one new death Wednesday, bring the total death toll to 378 since the pandemic began.

The county tallied 366 new cases from Wednesday morning to Thursday morning, bringing the total to 31,563.

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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.

Janelle Irwin Taylor

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as senior reporter for WMNF News. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at [email protected]


One comment

  • Carol

    August 6, 2020 at 2:58 pm

    I was tested at a CVS on July 1 and did not receive my results for THIRTEEN days! Negative but certainly outdated and useless!

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