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Coronavirus in Florida

New record COVID-19 death toll after week of decline

Tuesday brought news of 276 deaths in Florida.

State health officials confirmed the deaths of 276 residents in the last 24 hours, the largest single-day death toll of the pandemic in Florida.

The Department of Health also tallied the death of a non-resident in the state since Monday’s report. Overall, 8,553 Floridians have died with COVID-19, as have 132 non-residents in the state.

Last week showed signs of an improving death toll as average daily deaths declined and fewer people died than the week prior. For four straight days at the end of July, the state set record daily death tolls, ending at 257.

The seven-day average death toll began increasing over the weekend, reaching 164 Tuesday among residents. Still, that’s down since Wednesday last week, when the average was 185.

Tuesday’s report, which includes residents and non-residents who tested positive between Monday and Tuesday mornings also brought 5,831 diagnoses, raising the state’s case count to 542,792. For all day Thursday, the state confirmed cases in 5,886 residents.

While the death toll may be worsening, there are favorable trends for the state. The positivity rate continued declining, emergency department visits are down and hospital censuses are declining.

On Tuesday, the most recent complete day available, 10.3% of results returned came back positive. That breaks three consecutive days of single digit death tolls, but the seven-day positivity rate average dropped to 9.5%.

ED visits, which Gov. Ron DeSantis has highlighted as his preferred metric for tracking the virus’ spread, have been declining since early July. Tuesday’s report shows an upward jump of visits, but the trend remains downward.

While another 569 Floridians were confirmed in hospitals with COVID-19, the Agency for Health Care Administration shows people leaving hospitals faster than they are entering. According to AHCA, 6,754 people were hospitalized with a primary diagnosis of COVID-19 Tuesday, down 113 from 24 hours earlier.

Floridians are also now watching cases among children as schools districts statewide prepare to head back into school this month — some to brick and mortar schools and others opting to continue e-learning.

To date, there have been 42,761 COVID-19 cases among kids under 18, an increase of more than 3,000 in the last 24 hours. Of those cases, 36% have been among high-school aged kids 14-17, 26% among elementary school-aged kids 5-10 years old and 17% in middle school ages 11-13. Kids in daycare and pre-k, those ages 1-4, represent 16% of all pediatric cases.

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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.

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Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

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