ORLANDO, Fla. – Hours before Florida enters its ‘full phase one’ of reopening, The Florida Department of Health announced new positive coronavirus cases across the state.
As of Saturday, the FDOH reported a total of 45,588 confirmed COVID-19 cases since the respiratory illness was first detected in the state on March 1.
The FDOH also reports nine additional deaths bringing the total number of deaths in Florida to 1,973.
[READ MORE: When did coronavirus first appear in Florida?]
Since Saturday, there were 777 new cases of COVID-19.
Over 8,200 people have been hospitalized due to the illness.
Florida started the first steps of reopening less than two weeks ago and now, the Governor announced that the state can enter what he calls “full phase one.”
All the openings that began on May 4 still remain, although some restrictions have been loosened now that Florida is taking its next baby step in getting the economy back to what it was before the coronavirus pandemic struck.
The biggest change is that gyms and fitness studios, which had been closed since mid-March, can open their doors once again.
To find out what other changes you can expect as Florida enters its full phase one of reopening click or tap here.
News broke Friday that theme parks across Florida can soon begin submitting their plans for reopening but locally, the Orange County mayor doesn’t expect Walt Disney World, Universal Studios or any of the other major attractions to begin the phased opening process until at least June.
Gov. Ron DeSantis made the announcement Friday afternoon during a coronavirus update that Florida will enter what he called “full phase one” on Monday and at that point, theme park leaders can submit their plans.
Disney Springs, which has been closed for more than a month due to the coronavirus pandemic, will begin slowly reopening on May 20.
Come May 20, guests can expect reduced hours, parking and capacity in order to keep in line with social distancing rules.
“Disney Springs will begin to reopen in a way that incorporates enhanced safety measures, including increased cleaning procedures, the use of appropriate face coverings by both cast members and guests, limited-contact guest services and additional safety training for cast members,” Matt Simon, the vice president of Disney Springs, wrote in the post.
Resort theme parks and hotels will remain closed even as the dining and shopping complex opens once again.
AdventHealth, who relies on third-party labs to provide test results, has terminated a contract with one lab after unacceptable delays.
“Unfortunately, one of these labs processing a significant number of our public tests has been unable to fulfill its obligation,” officials said.
Officials were not clear as to what exactly caused the delays and which lab was terminated.
“AdventHealth has advised that one of the labs they were using for the sputum based COVID-19 testing at our Daytona State College - Palm Coast testing site was unreliable. They are taking responsibility and will be contacting the impacted individuals directly to offer options,” Flagler County Emergency Services wrote on Twitter.