ORLANDO, Fla. – Florida is reporting thousands of new coronavirus infections Monday as Walt Disney World prepares to reopen two more of its theme parks later this week.
The Florida Department of Health reported 12,624 new positive coronavirus cases Monday, bringing the state’s overall total to 282,435 cases since the virus was first detected in March. This is the second-highest number of new cases ever recorded.
Florida shattered the national record for the highest total of new cases reported in a 24-hour period on Sunday with 15,299 new COVID-19 infections. The state also broke its record for the most coronavirus tests administered in a single day. According to state officials, 99,003 new tests were reported Sunday.
The Florida Department of Health data shows another 227 have been admitted to the hospital for coronavirus-related treatment. In Florida, a total of 18,498 patients have received hospital care due to the virus. The state is now releasing numbers on currently hospitalized patients, the Florida Agency for Healthcare Administration dashboard revealing 8,085 people are receiving treatment at a medical facility due to complications with the respiratory illness.
According to the FDOH, another 35 people have died of COVID-19 since the agency’s last report bringing the state’s death toll to 4,381, including 104 non-residents who have died in Florida.
As coronavirus cases continue to climb, parts of Central Florida have seen a high demand for coronavirus testing. Osceola Heritage Park extended its operating hours for another week to help meet the need. The Volusia County Fairgrounds will also administer tests Monday and Tuesday after backups at laboratories forced the site to shut down for two days.
Gov. Ron DeSantis held a news conference Saturday in which he addressed the demand for testing and the delay for results.
“The lab resources are backed up. Some of these turn-around times are supposed to be 48 hours, some of these big commercial labs are three to four days behind that,” he said. “Some of the supplies are running low. I’m working with the White House to try to get more reagents down for our hospitals.”
The governor said he hopes to have an update on more federal resources early this week to help mitigate the lab delays in reporting results for coronavirus testing. According to the White House, Vice President Mike Pence is expected to participate in a video teleconference with governors on COVID-19 response Monday afternoon.
Though Florida continues to see thousands of new cases reported, reopening procedures persist in Central Florida.
Walt Disney World reopened two of its theme parks Saturday, welcoming thousands of people back to Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom with enhanced sanitization and safety procedures. The theme park company is set to reopen Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Hong Kong Disneyland becomes the first of the company’s theme parks to shut down again due to another coronavirus outbreak in China.
After suffering a loss of more than $1 billion amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the Orange County Convention Center is also preparing for its first large-scale event since the shutdown. The convention center is set to host 17,000 people for the Amateur Athletic Union 2020 Junior National Volleyball Championship. The event begins Tuesday and is expected to wrap up Thursday.
These large-scale reopenings come as Florida’s daily positivity rate is 12.9%. The positivity rate is the number of new positive cases compared to those tested on a given day. This metric hit a new record Thursday at 18.39% Public health officials warning that local leaders should refrain from opening parts of the economy until the daily positivity rate remains consistently below 10%.
Below is the state dashboard. If you are having trouble viewing the dashboard on mobile, click here.
Here’s a breakdown of coronavirus numbers by county in the Central Florida region:
|County||Total cases||New cases||Deaths||Hospitalizations||New hospitalizations|
Here’s what you need to know about the coronavirus in Central Florida:
1. A record-breaking number of cases
Two Central Florida counties have set new records for daily reported infections.
Marion County is reporting 153 new infections, which is the most the region has reported in a 24-hour period since the pandemic began. Its previous record was 145 new cases, reported on Friday.
Seminole County public health officials are reporting 237 new cases in its region, the highest number of new infections reported in a day. Its previous record was 236 cases reported June 7.
2. Back to the classroom
Orange and Marion counties started summer learning programs with students reporting to the classroom. Orange County educational leaders said classroom seating would be spaced out with students required to wear masks. The district said there would be increased cleaning measures. Much of the same procedures will be enacted during Marion County’s summer learning program, except there will be no shared classroom materials and students will not be required to wear a face covering.
Parents say the summer learning programs will be a test run to help make their decision about the following semester. In Marion County, parents will have until Wednesday to determine if their child will participate in online learning or report to school. Lake County parents have to decide between traditional in-school learning, virtual school, or a combination of the two by Monday.
3. CARES Act funding
Orange County residents hit with financial hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic may not have another chance to apply for federal funds through the county’s CARES Act portal.
The portal reopened Monday at 8 a.m. and reached its 10,000-user capacity 20 minutes later. The Individual and Family Assistance portal will no longer receive applicants as it processes the most recent wave of submissions. This is the fifth time the portal was opened, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings said it might be the last.
Flagler County leaders are set to discuss how to utilize the $20 million it received in federal funds Monday morning.
4. Coronavirus testing
Central Florida counties are ramping up testing efforts by extending operating hours and reopening sites.
Orange County Health Services will offer free COVID-19 testing at Barnett Park Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Appointments are required and can be made online at ocfl.net/BarnettPark. People can also head to the Orange County Convention Center for coronavirus and anti-body testing, appointments are not required.
Osceola Heritage Park will be open for drive-thru testing Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Health administrators are also educating patients on how to avoid contacting COVID-19.
The Volusia County Fairgrounds will resume coronavirus testing Monday and Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.