Florida reports 4,852 new COVID-19 cases as health officials ask public to be vigilant during spring break

With coronavirus numbers dropping, health officials warn spring break isn’t time to let your guard down

Spring break in Daytona Beach on March 15, 2021.
Spring break in Daytona Beach on March 15, 2021. (WKMG)

ORLANDO, Fla. – Across most of Florida things are looking up or rather the number of COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations are down as more people continue to get vaccinated warding off the disease, however, department of health officials are hoping it stays that way in the weeks after spring break.

Dr. Raul Pino, health officer with the Florida Department of Health in Orange County, said Monday the county’s virus recovery rate is at 97%, likely the highest it’s ever been. Halfway through March, Orange County has reported eight deaths. That’s also very low from previous months, according to Pino.

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Moments after sharing the positive outlook, Pino warned “spring break is coming” and said he is concerned because after previous holiday periods there is always an uptick in cases.

“I think that our coastal towns will see larger numbers of people coming to celebrate spring break, and that’s always a concern you also saw what happened in Miami Beach, during the weekend with unruly crowds and we hope that will not be the case here,” Pino said.

Two Miami Beach Police Department officers were injured and had to be taken to a hospital over the weekend after breaking up a crowd of around 200 blocking traffic.

All of Orange County’s major theme parks are fully booked for the entire month and the occupancy rate is increasing, Pino said.

“So that means that (there’s) an influx of people coming into the county. And that’s why it is important to continue to have these preventive measures in place, because we are in a very good place right now,” Pino said of social distancing, hand washing and wearing a mask.

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Find the state-run COVID-19 dashboard below:

Below is a breakdown of Florida COVID-19 data reported by the state on March 16.

Cases

The Florida Department of Health reported 4,832 new cases on Tuesday, bringing the state’s overall total to 1,984,425 cases since the virus was first detected on March 1, 2020.

Deaths

Florida reported 102 new virus-related deaths Tuesday, bringing the death toll to 33,061. This number includes the 612 non-residents who died in Florida.

Hospitalizations

As of Tuesday afternoon, there were currently 3,052 people with the virus hospitalized in Florida, according to the state Agency for Health Care Administration.

Since March 1, 2020, 82,584 people have been hospitalized in Florida after complications from COVID-19. That number includes the 277 new patients who have been recently hospitalized due to the virus, according to the health department’s daily report released on Tuesday.

Positivity rate

The percent of positive results was 5.95% Monday out of 81,222 tests performed. The numbers reported daily by the state reflect test results from the day prior. Health officials say the rate should remain between 5% and 10% to prove a community has a hold of the virus and is curbing infections.

Vaccinations

The Florida Department of Health began releasing a daily report in December on COVID-19 vaccines administered throughout the state.

FDOH reports 2,321,008 people are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. These individuals either received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine or completed a two-shot series.

As of Tuesday afternoon, 4,338,099 people have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine.

See COVID-19 data for the Central Florida region below:

CountyCasesNew casesHospitalizationsNew hospitalizationsDeathsNew deaths
Brevard35,8402222,09112782-1
Flagler6,293133440940
Lake25,678511,32245941
Marion28,438291,877278979
Orange118,6273062,47891,1492
Osceola38,205891,31834700
Polk59,1111204,562201,20410
Seminole28,503721,16934480
Sumter8,3922352522420
Volusia36,047921,859156941

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