ORLANDO, Fla. – The Florida Department of Health reported 2,423 new cases of the respiratory illness Sunday, bringing the state total to 663,994 since the pandemic was first detected here in March.
The DOH reported 8 new deaths Sunday, bringing Florida’s death toll from the pandemic to 12,764. Florida’s death total is comprised of 12,608 residents and 156 non-residents who died in the state from the virus. On Saturday, health officials reported 98 new deaths.
Recent deaths from COVID-19 across Central Florida made up 6 out of the 8 new fatalities reported across the state. The last time Florida saw fewer than 10 deaths was on June 15 with eight deaths.
Data from COVID-19 related deaths is often delayed and new deaths can take up to two weeks to report, according to the DOH.
According to the Agency for Health Care Administration, as of Sunday morning, there were a total of 2,631 patients hospitalized statewide with COVID-19 compared to the same time 24 hours ago.
The DOH reported 82 new hospitalized patients Sunday, bringing the state total to 41,297 for people who have been in hospital at some point during the last six months due to the virus.
Florida’s positivity rate -- the number of new cases compared to overall tests --- was 4.44% on Friday. The DOH has not released new data for Saturday as of this publication.
[SEE SATURDAY’S REPORT: Florida reports 3,190 new positive coronavirus cases, 98 new deaths]
In recent days, state and local officials have made moves to relax some of the health safety rules put into place to prevent infection.
Florida Corrections Secretary Mark Inch on Friday announced that starting Oct. 2 that he will lift the state’s ban on visiting prisons. Inch said state corrections officials will release more information about the new visitation policies next week.
Some Central Florida schools will once again be welcoming students back to the classroom after positive COVID-19 cases forced the schools to close.
The Osceola County school district announced on August 28th it was closing Harmony Middle School for two weeks after 10 staff members tested positive. District officials said 650 students and staff switched to digital learning during the closure.
In Brevard County, students at Golfview Elementary are returning to school after almost two weeks of e-learning.
To find out which school will not be returning for in-person classes this week, click or tap here.
Here are three things to know about the virus for Sept. 13. Click on the blue headline to read more about the story:
- Florida bars reopen: Florida’s bars will be allowed to reopen at 50 percent capacity on Monday as long as they follow state social distancing and COVID-prevention rules. However local officials aren’t allowing bars in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach to reopen yet, saying it isn’t safe enough in those areas because the virus is still prevalent.
- When will Florida enter phase 3: During an event in Miami, Governor Ron DeSantis announced that both Broward and Miami-Dade Counties will join the rest of the state in Phase 2 of reopening beginning on Monday. Here in Central Florida, performance halls continue to prepare to reopen and bars can reopen on Monday -- so what’s next? DeSantis has not indicated when Phase 3 could happen, however, his reopening plan calls for Phase 3 when “there is no evidence of a rebound or resurgence of COVID-19 cases.”
- Pandemic changing Florida businesses: Recently released sales tax data reveals the extent to which we were forced to change — as consumers and as workers — after the economy shut down last spring. Restaurants, the lifeblood of South Florida’s hospitality industry, watched business plummet after dining rooms were forced to close. Bars, clothing stores, salons, bakeries and other businesses were deemed off-limits to walk-in customers. Many of those businesses have since reopened, with changes, but the data from the Florida Department of Revenue also shows that we actually spent more money in some surprising places.
Below is a breakdown of COVID-19 cases across the Central Florida region:
|County||Total Cases||New Cases||Total Hospitalizations||New Hospitalizations||Total Deaths||New Deaths|