Florida won’t release COVID-19 data on Thanksgiving

New numbers will be available on Friday

More people getting tested for coronavirus ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday

ORLANDO, Fla. – For the first time since the coronavirus pandemic first began hitting Florida hard, the state will go a day without releasing data showing the most recent COVID-19 infections and deaths.

The Florida Department of Health announced Wednesday night that its dashboard will not be updated on Thanksgiving. Floridians can expect new numbers to be released on Friday.

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The agency has been releasing an update each day for months now, showing how the respiratory illness has spread across the state.

Initially, the dashboard showing cases, the positivity rate and other health metrics was updated around 11 a.m. each day but in recent weeks the FDOH decided to start releasing the data later in the afternoon, usually closer to 4 p.m. It’s unclear why the department made the change.

On Wednesday, 8,376 new COVID-19 cases were reported, bringing the statewide cumulative total to 961,676. Daily case totals in the past week have hovered between about 6,000 to nearly 9,000.

Testing sites across Central Florida have experienced long lines and wait times this week as residents rush to get tested before meeting with their friends and family for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Experts have urged caution at gatherings and warned against traveling.

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