Orange County leaders report 18 COVID-19 deaths in month of August, so far

17 new deaths reported in the county since Monday, leaders say

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Orange County leaders announced Thursday 17 new deaths had been reported within the county since they last provided an update on the county’s COVID-19 response on Monday.

Dr. Raul Pino with the Florida Department of Health in Orange County later clarified that two of the reported deaths were from July and 15 happened in August. He added that there had been 18 deaths so far in the month of August, which means the county has seen more than one death from COVID-19 per day since Aug. 1.

“That brings the total of July deaths to 55,” Pino said, adding three recent deaths were reported from assisted living facilities. “That’s something to watch. We have seen a few cases (in assisted living facilities) lately.”

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He also explained that 16 of the 17 deaths had underlying health conditions and that it was not yet known whether the 18th person had any underlying conditions. Seven of the recent deaths were fully vaccinated, Pino said.

Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings announced that one of the deaths was a county corrections officer.

“I had the opportunity to speak with his wife, earlier today. And it is with most sadness and deep regret that this happened for a second time to the men and women who serve at the Orange County Jail,” Demings said.

Another corrections officer died from COVID-19 earlier this month, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

Pino said the county’s 14-day rolling positivity rate is 20.07%. Health experts have said that positivity rates should be between 5% and 10% or lower to slow community spread of the disease.

The county has seen a slight increase in the number of people who have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine — 65.14% of the eligible population. On Monday, the county reported 64.33% of the eligible population had received at least one shot.

The mayor also announced that all Orange County-run youth sports leagues, including practice and games, are suspended beginning Thursday until further notice.

“Due to the spike in the COVID cases and the fact that our residents ages 11 and under are not eligible for a vaccine, all county-run youth sports leagues, including games and practices, are suspended until further notice,” Demings said.

The mayor said this will impact about 1,100 boys and girls in the county.

All county parks remain open but recreation centers are operating at limited capacity.


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About the Author:

Thomas Mates is a digital storyteller for News 6 and ClickOrlando.com. He also produces the podcast Florida Foodie. Thomas is originally from Northeastern Pennsylvania and worked in Portland, Oregon before moving to Central Florida in August 2018. He graduated from Temple University with a degree in Journalism in 2010.