ORLANDO, Fla. – As the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread across Florida, local and state leaders are racing to provide resources for residents and increase capacity to test for the deadly respiratory illness.
The Florida Department of Health reports there are 21,628 people who have tested positive for coronavirus in the state as of Tuesday evening, an increase of more than 600 new cases since Monday.
On Tuesday, the FDOH reported 571 fatalities from the coronavirus with almost every Central Florida reporting new deaths related to the disease, including five in Orange County alone.
FDOH reports that there are 3,050 total hospitalizations in the state.
Here is the breakdown of confirmed COVID-19 cases by Central Florida county.
The FDOH numbers do not show how many people have recovered from the virus. Department officials have declined to release that information after several requests from News 6. Orange County health officer Dr. Raul Pino said coronavirus patients must test negative twice in 24 hours before leaving isolation.
Take a look at the map and dashboard below. Zoom out to see the reported cases across the state. If you are having trouble viewing on mobile, click here.
Officials across Central Florida are working to open additional COVID-19 testing sites to better accommodate the needs of residents.
On Tuesday, AdventHealth opened a COVID-19 drive-up testing location Wednesday at the Mall at Millenia in Orlando.
It will be the second drive-thru testing location operation for AdventHealth after a site opened Friday at Daytona International Speedway.
AdventHealth said results can be expected in two to three days. Those who test positive will receive a call from a nurse to review the results and provide care instructions.
Flagler County also opened its first coronavirus testing site this week, according to county officials, but only tested 10 people on the first day.
The drive-thru site on the Palm Coast campus of Daytona State College, was only available to first responders and health care workers but due to the low turnout, beginning, Wednesday, the site will be open to county residents.
The Orange County Convention Center began issuing 400 coronavirus tests a day Monday, and is now a state-operated site run by the Florida Department of Emergency Management, according to a news release. Prior to this change, the site was run by the Department of Health and Human Services and FEMA.
[Timeline: The spread of coronavirus in Florida]
As of the site closing Sunday, the Orange County Convention Center testing site had completed 4,963 to date since opening on March 25.
Three new coronavirus testing sites opened in Volusia County Monday, each site planning to administer 200 tests daily.
Many Floridians are anxiously awaiting Economic Impact Payment stimulus checks that are set to begin hitting bank accounts anytime now as Florida’s unemployment system continues to falter due to demand.
Jobless Floridians continue to flood the state’s website trying to apply for unemployment benefits amid the spread of the coronavirus. The agency distributing the funds has not disclosed when eligible claimants should expect to receive their first weekly payment.
Gov. Ron DeSantis said Wednesday tens of thousands of Walt Disney Workers who were recently furloughed could be automatically enrolled in Florida’s already overburdened unemployment system.
Direct deposit is the preferred method for the federal government to issue the stimulus money from the CARES ACT but paper checks will be mailed eventually as well. Many Americans do not file taxes or haven’t updated their banking information since the last time they filed.
According to the IRS, this application should be filled out if you did not file a 2018 or 2019 federal income tax return because your gross income was under $12,200 ($24,400 for married couples). This includes people who had no income.
Additionally, the IRS said people in these groups who have qualifying children under age 17 can use this application to claim the $500 payment per child.
If you receive Social Security retirement benefits, Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, or Railroad Retirement and Survivor Benefits you should not fill out the aforementioned form, according to the IRS.