Central Florida COVID-19 case count climbs by 1,500 … again

CORONAVIRUS ORLANDO (1) (Large)
For the second day in a row, the region reported new post-summer records.

For the second straight day Central Florida saw more than 1,500 new cases of COVID-19 and high numbers of hospital admissions and deaths logged by state officials Thursday, harkening to the worst times seen in the heat of the summer surge.

The six-county greater Orlando region saw 34 new deaths attributed to COVID-19 in the latest report issued by the Florida Department of Health. That followed the 25 deaths reported Wednesday. However, some of those deaths are being explained as dating back months, and having been reassigned as state authorities revise the data based on new information.

Yet the relatively high numbers reported in Central Florida were consistent with what was seen statewide, as Florida officials reported one of its worst public health days in months.

The Central Florida numbers, and the also-significantly high numbers of new hospital admissions reported Wednesday and Thursday, reflect some tinkering that state officials are doing with the Central Florida data to correct places of residence, as they did wholesale on Tuesday.

Orange County’s Health Officer Dr. Raul Pino said Thursday that the increase in cases probably represents a bump from Thanksgiving.

Still the region logged a total of 1,560 new cases according Thursday’s report, a new post-summer one-day high, for the second day in a row.

The region also saw 43 new hospital admissions attributed to the disease Thursday. That is not a recent worst one-day total, but continues a 10-day trend of high numbers of new hospital admissions.

Orange County’s total COVID-19 caseload increased by 642 infected people Thursday, according to the state’s latest report. Orange also saw 14 new hospital admissions and 25 deaths newly-attributed to COVID-19. The only time Orange has suffered so many COVID-19 fatalities in one day was on Aug. 6.

Osceola County saw 261 more cases logged Thursday. The county saw five new hospital admissions, and four people whose deaths were newly-attributed to COVID-19 complications.

Volusia County tallied 167 new cases, 10 new hospital admissions, and two people who died from the coronavirus.

Seminole County saw 162 new cases, just one new hospital admission, but two more people reported to have died from the disease.

Lake County logged 160 new cases, saw two new hospital admissions, yet no new deaths attributed to COVID-19.

Brevard County had 156 new cases included in the latest state report, 11 new hospital admissions, and one person who was reported to have died from the disease.

In the latest batch of COVID-19 test results that were returned Wednesday, there was a slight dip in the positive testing rates for most Central Florida counties. Yet the region’s overall positive test rate still came in at about 7.9%, above the state average of 7%, and well above the 5% threshold that troubles public health officials. Lake County had Central Florida’s highest positive test rate, 9.3%, while Brevard had the lowest, at 5.4%.

Scott Powers

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at [email protected]



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