ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Florida health officials reported 1,948 new cases of coronavirus Wednesday, ending the sixth month of the pandemic with 706,516 total cases since the virus was first detected in the state.
Action to mitigate the pandemic was a hot topic during Tuesday’s presidential debate, with President Donald Trump addressing national response and the economy, saying the U.S. did what it could as leaders learned about the virus.
“Now we’re weeks away from a vaccine,” he said during Tuesday’s debate.
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden criticized the president’s response, saying the more than 200,000 deaths could have been avoided.
On Wednesday the Florida Department of Health reported 175 people have recently died from coronavirus. These fatalities bring the state death toll up to 14,488.
Currently, there are 2,092 people hospitalized in Florida with the virus, according to the state Agency for Health Care Administration.
The state reported 253 new hospitalizations on Wednesday bringing the total to 44,108 for individuals who have been hospitalized since March because of the illness.
Florida’s rate for those who tested positive for the first time was 5.03%, compared to the overall test reported in one day.
Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Florida will receive 6.4 million rapid antigen COVID-19 tests from the federal government to expand testing.
[READ TUESDAY’S REPORT: Florida coronavirus cases, deaths increase as worldwide death toll surpasses 1 million]
Here are three things to know about the coronavirus for Sept. 30:
- Disney layoffs: After a series of financially devastating months caused by the coronavirus pandemic, Disney is laying off thousands of employees, according to a statement from the company. The company has announced it will lay off at least 28,000 U.S. employees, of which 67% are part-time, according to the statement. It’s still unclear how many of Walt Disney World’s more than 70,000 Central Florida employees will be affected by the layoffs.
- Biketoberfest to go on as planned: Biketoberfest will go on as planned in Volusia County. County leaders agreed on Tuesday, they will issue permits to non-city businesses participating in the event, without restrictions. County leaders will recommend safety guidelines, but will not enforce or fine establishments after Gov. Ron DeSantis moved Florida to phase three of the reopening plan. Read more about their decision here.
- Florida to receive millions of rapid test: Florida will receive 400,000 rapid-test kits a week that can be used to detect COVID-19 infections at schools, senior centers and long-term care facilities, Gov. Ron DeSantis said Tuesday at a news conference in Clearwater. The federal government requires that the tests be performed in settings that operate under what is known as a CLIA Certificate of Waiver, which, DeSantis said, requires that the tests be conducted by nurses. But DeSantis said the state will request a waiver of that requirement, saying it isn’t a good use of nurses' time. Read why here.
Below is a breakdown of COVID-19 cases in the Central Florida region:
|County||Cases||New cases||Hospitalizations||New hospitalizations||Deaths||New deaths|
Explain Orange County