With thousands of positive test results pouring in every day, Florida topped 200,000 coronavirus cases on Sunday.
Hitting 200,000 cases this weekend would have seemed unlikely — if not unthinkable — a month ago: On June 5, Florida totaled 61,488 cases, after adding another 1,305 positive results that day.
But then came a massive surge that included 10,059 new cases reported Sunday, bringing the overall total to 200,111 cases. That followed 11,458 new cases reported Saturday, 9,488 new cases reported Friday and 10,109 new cases reported Thursday.
In all, Florida added 59,036 cases during the past week.
The death toll as of Sunday: 3,731 Florida residents and 101 non-residents. That reflected an increase of 312 Florida resident deaths during the past week from COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the coronavirus.
Amid the surge, Gov. Ron DeSantis has focused on steps the state has taken, such as boosting protections for nursing-home residents, as seniors and people with underlying medical conditions — pretty much the definition of nursing-home residents — are particularly vulnerable to the disease.
DeSantis also has tried to drive home the message that many new infections are occurring in young adults, who are less likely to suffer severe medical consequences.
“It’s been a huge shift. The case growth has really been in that 18- to-34, -35 age group,” DeSantis said during a news conference Thursday with Vice President Mike Pence in Tampa. “Now, those are folks that are by and large going to be much less prone to significant consequences. Nevertheless, with the increasing positivity rate, it’s clear that you’re seeing more and more community transmission really being driven by that age group. And so, if you’re someone in one of the medically vulnerable conditions, or you’re an older person, just understand that that’s out there, continue to be vigilant.”But Democrats have blasted DeSantis for not taking steps such as requiring face masks to be worn in public places statewide to prevent spread of the disease. Many local governments have required face masks, but DeSantis has declined to issue a statewide mandate or to backtrack from economic reopening efforts that started in May and expanded in June.
We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Orlando Weekly works for you, and your support is essential.
Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Central Florida.
Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.
Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Orlando’s true free press free.