ORLANDO, Fla. – The Florida Department of Health reported 12,444 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, as well as 136 new deaths.
The new cases bring Florida’s total number of confirmed coronavirus patients since March 1, when the virus was first detected in the state, to 402,312.
Earlier this month, the Florida Department of Health began reporting resident and non-resident deaths as separate categories. The state reported a total of 135 new resident deaths and one new non-resident death in Florida on Friday, for a cumulative total of 5,768 deaths.
The new reported COVID-19 deaths come one day after the state reported its highest number of new deaths in a single day in Florida, at 173, on Thursday. Earlier this week, the state reported fewer than 10,000 new cases for two consecutive days but broke its short-lived streak on Thursday, when Florida reported 10,249 new cases of COVID-19.
[TIMELINE: The spread of coronavirus in Florida]
The state’s daily positivity rate, which represents the number of people who tested positive for the first time divided by all the people that tested that day and excludes those who have previously tested positive, stood at 13.31% on Friday, up slightly from Thursday’s rate of 12.31%.
Statewide, more than 3.2 million people have been tested for the novel coronavirus.
Below is the state COVID-19 dashboard. If you are having trouble viewing the dashboard on mobile, click here.
The state also recently began reporting the number of patients currently hospitalized for COVID-19 through the Florida Agency for Healthcare Administration dashboard. As of Friday morning, 9,253 people were receiving treatment at medical facilities across the state due to complications from the novel coronavirus. The state reported a record-breaking number of 581 new hospitalizations on Friday. Overall, 23,225 Florida residents have been hospitalized for the virus since the start of the pandemic.
According to the dashboard, 16.32% of adult ICU beds were available Friday morning.
Dr. Raul Pino, with the Florida Department of Health in Orange County, said during a news conference Thursday afternoon that the mortality rate for COVID-19 patients in intensive care units is about 50%.
“We have 162 individuals (in Orange County) that have passed away from this disease. And those numbers will continue to climb as we have the number of people in intensive care unit -- about 100 -- and the mortality rate for those ... with COVID-19 in intensive care units is quite high. It’s about 50%,” Pino said.
He said the need for convalescent plasma donations from COVID-19 survivors is great and asked anyone who has been the virus to donate if they can to help treat those battling the deadly virus in the ICU.
“Why that plasma is so important is because that plasma has an immunity to the virus. So when you give it to someone who is experiencing these disease, you’re really giving a boost, and ... a chance of fighting and surviving this disease,” Pino said. That’s why I encourage everyone who had had the virus and is able to donate blood to donate because you will have really, really truly saving a life, it could really, really make a huge difference.”
For more information on how to donate convalescent plasma, click here.
Friday’s new numbers come as parents of Central Florida students have to make some major decisions about the upcoming school semester. Parents of both Orange and Seminole County students have to decide on Friday which learning option their student will participate in this fall, whether it be face-to-face instruction, online learning or a hybrid method.
As of Thursday, more than 50% of parents in both counties were still undecided.
While all brick-and-mortar schools have been ordered by the state to reopen for the fall semester, many districts are adjusting their plans to delay school start dates and postpone practices for fall sports.
On Thursday, the Florida High School Athletic Association made the decision to postpone fall sports until Aug. 24. Before that decision, some Central Florida districts had already postponed on their own.
Also on Thursday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a list of safety guidelines for students, families and schools to follow as kids return to class amid the ongoing pandemic.
Parents of Central Florida students can find everything they need to know about their district’s back-to-school plan at ClickOrlando.com/backtoschool.
Here’s a county-by-county breakdown of coronavirus numbers in the Central Florida region:
|County||Total Cases||New Cases||Deaths||Hospitalizations||New Hospitalizations|
On Thursday, Orange County officials confirmed two new outbreaks of COVID-19: One at an assisted living facility in Ocoee and another at the Orange County Jail.
Pino said 66 residents and 30 staff members at Ocoee Health Center had tested positive for the coronavirus.
“I would like to let you know that we have a significant outbreak that we are following in an assisted living facility and we have some concerns,” Pino said.
Pino said of the residents infected, 22 have been hospitalized for concerns related to the virus.
Mayor Jerry Demings confirmed the outbreak at the Orange County Jail, saying 33 inmates had tested positive for the virus.
“You’ve heard me say this before that the Orange County Jail is a microcosm of Orange County at large,” Demings said. “Well, you know with law enforcement officers arresting people from the community and taking them to the jail, we knew that it was just a matter of time before we would have cases in our jail.”
Also on Thursday, President Donald Trump canceled plans to host the Republican National Convention in Florida next month, blaming the recent surge in cases throughout the state.
“It’s a different world, and it will be for a little while,” Trump said, explaining his decision at a White House coronavirus briefing. “To have a big convention is not the right time.”