Together with a recent high volume of COVID-19 testing Thursday, officials reported 3,255 diagnoses and 147 deaths in Florida since
On Wednesday, the Department of Health received results for 80,707 people tested in the Sunshine State, the most in a single day this month. It was also the largest collection of data since Aug. 21, barring Aug. 31, which included a dump of months-old data.
In total, nearly 5 million Floridians have been tested for COVID-19, as have 20,568 nonresidents in the state.
Overall, 674,456 people, including 666,507 Floridians, have tested positive. The 147 resident deaths push the state’s toll above 13,000, now with 13,086 confirmed fatalities and an additional 161 non-resident deaths.
The new cases cover results returned between Wednesday morning and Thursday morning. For all-day Wednesday , DOH received 3,309 positive cases with a median age of 37, up from a recent low of 35 as schools and universities reopen.
The fastest-growing age cohort for the virus is Floridians aged 15 to 24. Of those positive cases from Wednesday, 865 — or 26% — of all positives came from that age group. Throughout August, 14% of cases were aged 15 to 24.
Gov. Ron DeSantis began underscoring emergency department visits over testing positivity rates in early August after raising questions about the reliability of complete and timely reporting from private laboratories.
Both hospital visits for illnesses related to influenza and COVID-19 have declined each week since July 5. However, DOH reported 2,101 visits for flu-like illnesses last week, the most since mid-August. Meanwhile, visits for illnesses like COVID-19 dropped a ninth consecutive week to 4,058.
An increase in flu-like illnesses are typical during this part of the year, DOH spokesman Alberto Moscoso assured.
“We are below the numbers that we see typically at this time of year,” he said in a statement. “We typically see an ILI (influenza-like illness) increase this year. Normally, this yearly increase is attributable to cold viruses that circulate at the start of the school year. These visits will be captured by the ILI syndrome, even though most are not influenza.”
Overall, 42,047 Floridians have been hospitalized, an increase of 196 since Wednesday’s report. But the Agency for Health Care Administration reports that 97 fewer people are currently hospitalized than 24 hours earlier, dropping the count to 2,383.
The percent positivity rate ticked up slightly for a third day after recording a recent low of 3.9% on Sunday. Of the results the department received, 4.5% returned positive.
Over the last six days, the positivity rate has been below 5%. Some experts say the positivity rate should be below 5% for two weeks before reopening services like schools.
The seven-day average of deaths, which for a time dropped below 100 last week, is back up to 109.
The most deaths confirmed in a single daily report was 276 on Aug. 11.
Fatalities don’t necessarily occur the day they are reported. Of the 153 deaths confirmed since Wednesday’s report, only 108 of them occurred in the last 30 days.
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, consider 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 nonresidents 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.