Florida coronavirus: nearly 1,500 dead

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The latest coronavirus report from the Florida Department of Health added 72 deaths, bringing the death toll to 1,471.

And Florida and other states in the United States have taken their first steps toward reopening amid the coronavirus pandemic, a model used by the Trump administration has dramatically altered his planned state and nation deaths.

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, a research center at the University of Washington, which has been one of the primary tools for determining the government’s response to the coronavirus, released new data on Monday evening that now projects near 4,000 deaths in Florida and almost 135,000 deaths in the US

The numbers are more than double projections from just a week ago before several states, including Florida, lifted orders for home stays.

The new models also do not show the end of daily deaths, but a continuous increase in the number of deaths until August 4, the extent of projections at present. For Florida, the projection relates to 3,971 deaths with an uncertainty between 1,991 and 11,269. For the United States, the projections are now 134,475 with an uncertainty between 95,092 and 242,890.

Anticipated coronavirus deaths for Florida as of May 4, 2020.

Anticipated deaths from coronavirus for Florida as of May 4, 2020. (Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation)

In the past few weeks, while the state and nation were mostly locked up, models had shown deaths as high as around 1900 in Florida and 60,000 in the United States.

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Expected US coronavirus deaths> as of May 4, 2020. (Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation)

Despite the morbid change in long-term deaths from COVID-19, the models still show that Florida and the United States are at the top or even beyond the curve in terms of daily deaths.

To date, Florida’s deadliest day, according to the Florida Department of Health, was back on April 17 with 53 deaths, although more deaths are reported, the number of deaths per day is adjusted.

Florida coronavirus case maps by postal code and county

Search for Florida coronavirus patients by postal code using this interactive map. Also see hourly updates on confirmed cases, number of tests performed and details for each patient. Data includes cases in Broward County, Miami-Dade County, Palm Beach County, Orange County, Collier County, Lee County, Manatee County, Pinellas County, Volusia County, Hillsborough County and others.

Tuesday’s update of 72 new reported deaths is not all Monday, but spans several days. Tuesdays have been the biggest jump in reported deaths for two consecutive weeks since the state changed its reporting method from twice a day to a single report in the morning.

New COVID-19 cases on Tuesday increased by 542 from Monday to a total of 37,439. To date, the state has performed nearly 470,000 tests, 8% of which are positive for the virus.

At a press conference held Tuesday in Sarasota, the state’s most recent driving test site, Governor Ron DeSantis said that test results from more than 23,884 tests performed across the State reports on Monday showed the lowest percentage of new positive cases to date, at just 2.61%, since the major tests. has begun.

DeSantis said he would give more details on Wednesday about a mobile VR lab arriving in the state that will provide 45-minute rapid tests that will target vulnerable populations in assisted living centers. ‘State.

Florida Emergency Management Division director Jared Moskowitz said more mobile sites will go online this week, including upcoming locations in Brevard and Volusia counties, and will help shift the state’s daily testing capacity from its current 30,000 to its 40,000 goal.

DeSantis said state driving test sites will begin offering COVID-19 antibodies later this week, which would confirm if people have ever had the virus, although he notes that it is uncertain how long the antibodies have been in the body after infection. The state has 200,000 tests on hand and will also provide them to hospitals.

Also at the press conference, DeSantis noted that the section of his closure order that allowed take-out orders at restaurants was one of the most successful changes amid the coronavirus epidemic.

“I think it has been quite popular. We will probably continue. Maybe we will ask the Legislative Assembly to change the law on this, “he said.

He also said he felt “100% comfortable” going out to eat with his family at a restaurant, saying his children were not among the demographics most vulnerable to the virus.

Despite the projections, the state medical system did not become overwhelmed as some had predicted, which was a key factor in getting DeSantis to start “phase 1” of its reopening plan on Monday, with all Miami-Dade counties, except the three southern Florida counties, Broward and Palm Beach, reopening retailers, restaurants, and some state parks, although all with social distancing requirements and capacity restrictions.

The state’s economic shutdown has seen more than a million claims confirmed on its besieged unemployment benefits site, and less than 50% of those claims have been paid to date.

“This stuff was not going to cut it,” he said of the system, which has been suffering from bottlenecks and technological problems and has handled less than half of the tens of thousands of claims since the start of the epidemic in March.

At one point in mid-April, it only processed 4% of the requests.

The investigation will look at the contracts awarded to create the $ 77 million system under former Governor Rick Scott in 2011.

“All this money was spent on this system when it clearly lacked the capacity to exceed 3% to 4% unemployment, even a slight recession,” said DeSantis. “It is not a good use of taxpayers’ money. “

The serious state of unemployment will be relieved as the reopening plan continues.

Coronavirus Q & amp; A: Should I worry if I lose my sense of smell? Is it safe to order takeout?

As restrictions on coronaviruses change, here are answers to frequently asked questions about what people should and shouldn’t do while trying to slow the spread of the pandemic.

Orlando resident Brian Verner, who took his 1-year-old son James to Green Springs Park in Volusia County before stopping at the Willer Tree Café in Hollerbach in downtown Sanford.

“I was locked up with him for six weeks,” said the 34-year-old woman. “My wife works, she works all the time at home, so [I’m] just try to give it a break and get out. “

What remains closed throughout the state, however, are salons, barbers, spas and other personal care businesses, DeSantis not giving a clear timetable for the reopening of these operations.

To counter increase in people-to-people contacts, despite social distancing guidelines, state continues to multiply test sites, and local health officials say data shows response tending to go for now in the right direction.

“All of the current data indicates that we are in good shape,” said Dr. Raul Pino, director of the state health department in Orange County.

The county has performed more than 29,000 tests for the virus and the number of positive results continues to decline, with only 5% of tests returning as positive for the virus. And 93% of local cases are considered “recovered,” said Pino.

For the first time since early February, the number of people admitted to an Orange County hospital after an emergency room visit due to cough, fever or shortness of breath, all common symptoms of the virus, has dropped to almost zero, said Pino. The weekly count of patients going to the emergency room with influenza-like illness has also dropped to less than 100, down from 500 patients six weeks ago.

Central Florida now has 4,221 cases, including 1,446 in Orange, 547 in Polk, 521 in Volusia, 514 in Osceola, 403 in Seminole, 319 in Brevard, 236 in Sumter and 235 in Lake.

Five new deaths were reported Tuesday bringing the death toll in central Florida to 143. The new deaths include a 48-year-old man from Lake County, an 82-year-old man from Osceola County, a man from 88 years of Volusia County and two women in Polk County, one 85 and the other 94. Orange County still leads the region with 35 deaths reported to date. ((See details on all Central Florida cases here).

South Florida remains the epicenter of the pandemic in the state, accounting for 59 percent of the cases, with 22,106 in total in Miami-Dade (13224), Broward (5492) and Palm Beach (3390) counties.

Below is a summary of the latest coronavirus updates in the Orlando and Florida area. Also sign up for the new Florida Coronavirus Daily Update by subscribing to The Health Report newsletter and Breaking News emails OrlandoSentinel.com/newsletters.

David Siegel’s timeshare company Westgate wanted to use government assistance to promote its resorts

An executive at Westgate Resorts, the timeshare company owned by Orlando businessman David Siegel, has offered to use federal coronavirus rescue money to provide short-term jobs for bloggers. traveled to write articles promoting the company’s stations, according to an email obtained by the Orlando Sentinel.

Asked this week about Sentinel’s offer, a Westgate executive – chief operating officer Mark Waltrip – admitted in an email that the company had received money through the government’s “Paycheck Protection Program” federal, an emergency program to help the little ones in the country. companies continue to pay their employees during the economic collapse of COVID-19. But Waltrip said the company hadn’t used any of these funds to temporarily hire outside travel writers.

48-year-old man the youngest victim of coronavirus in Lake, Sumter

A 48-year-old man has become the youngest victim of coronavirus infection in Lake and Sumter counties, bringing the death toll to 14 in the lake on Tuesday, the state health department said. The man contacted someone who had COVID-19.

Overall, 28 people died from infection in Lake and Sumter, among the 1,471 deaths in Florida.

Mutant coronavirus emerged, even more contagious than original, study finds

Scientists have identified a new strain of coronavirus that has become dominant around the world and appears to be more contagious than versions that spread in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to new research by Los Alamos scientists. National Laboratory.

The new strain appeared in Europe in February, has migrated rapidly to the east coast of the United States, and has been the dominant strain worldwide since mid-March, the scientists wrote.

Lawsuit Changes Florida Mail Voting Requirements Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

Priorities The United States, Alianza for Progress, the Florida Alliance for Retired Americans and the plaintiffs filed the lawsuit Monday, almost exactly six months before the November 3 general election. The lawsuit challenges state laws and procedures, including the requirement that election supervisors receive ballots by email before 7 p.m. on polling night for the ballots to count.

Lake Commissioners Support Opening New Lounges And Other Businesses

Lake County commissioners said Tuesday they are supporting more businesses, such as salons, barbers and gyms in the county, as the state eases restrictions on coronaviruses. Other officials across central Florida have raised the same issue with Governor Ron DeSantis, whose phase 1 coronavirus order allows some businesses to operate with capacity, social distancing, and similar limitations .

Detroit automakers plan to restart factories on May 18

Fiat Chrysler CEO Mike Manley said Tuesday that his company plans to reopen its factories on May 18, subject to easing government restrictions. Car manufacturers in Detroit will likely follow the same schedule because their workers are represented by the same union. Tuesday, the United Auto Workers union seems to be in the game.

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings File Raises Bankruptcy Flag

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd., on Tuesday amended a file filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission citing financial losses due to the coronavirus, there is a “substantial doubt” that the company can “continue to operate”.

15 New York children hospitalized for a mysterious illness possibly linked to COVID-19

Many children, ages 2 to 15, have had symptoms associated with toxic shock or Kawasaki disease, a rare disease in children that involves inflammation of blood vessels, including the coronary arteries, said the city ​​health service.

None of the New York syndrome patients have died, according to a health department bulletin, which describes the disease as a “multisystem inflammatory syndrome potentially associated with COVID-19”.

As Trump urges states to reopen, his administration privately predicts that the death toll from coronavirus will almost double by June

As President Donald Trump urges states to reopen their economies, his administration privately forecasts a steady increase in coronavirus infections and deaths in the coming weeks, reaching around 3,000 deaths a day on June 1, almost double the actual level.

The projections, based on data collected by various agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and presented in an internal document obtained Monday by the New York Times, predicted around 200,000 new cases every day at the end of May , compared to around 30,000 cases now. There are currently around 1,750 deaths a day, according to the data.

Even before the coronavirus pandemic sparked an economic implosion, some 350,000 working households in central Florida – and a third of those in the state – were barely able to make ends meet. And that does not include the roughly 13 percent of households that lived in poverty.

According to a report released Tuesday by the non-profit Heart of Florida United Way, of the 7.8 million households in Florida, nearly 2.6 million were unable to afford basic housing expenses, child care, food, transportation, health care and a smartphone plan, despite having jobs.

DeSantis Orders Inquiry Into The State’s Ailing Unemployment Claims System

Governor Ron DeSantis on Monday ordered an investigation into what did not work with the $ 77 million unemployment benefit system that struggled to pay hundreds of thousands of Floridians who lost their jobs due of the coronavirus pandemic. At the same time, the governor said that the CONNECT system has seen great improvement in the past two weeks due to the additional staff and changes to the way claims have been handled.

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#GivingTuesdayNow aims to boost charitable donations in times of coronavirus

With record demand for food and shelter aid, charities in central Florida hope #GivingTuesdayNow – a new virtual giving campaign this week – can boost the bottom line of the coronavirus pandemic. The global event is hosted by the same coalition of philanthropists who launched the year after Thanksgiving #GivingTuesday, which raised $ 511 million in the United States last year.

Seminole County President Calls on Governor to Open Hairdressers, Salons and State Forests

Seminole County has joined other central Florida governments urging Governor Ron DeSantis to authorize the reopening of hair and nail salons as the state begins to ease restrictions on the fight against coronavirus. Restaurants and retail stores opened Monday with 25% capacity indoors and social distancing guidelines. But companies providing cosmetology services were not included in the first phase of DeSantis of the state’s economic recovery plan.

SeaWorld Orlando pass holders get free upgrades when parks reopen

Yes, SeaWorld Orlando is still closed without an official opening date on the calendar as the state slowly begins to reopen the coronavirus pandemic.

But the theme park operator has given pass holders something to look forward to, as the company announced on Monday that it will automatically update annual passes by one level for the rest of the year. . For example, a gold pass holder who has had no blocking dates at Aquatica Orlando and SeaWorld Orlando now has access to all of the company’s 11 US theme parks, including Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, under the platinum pass.

Florida trials suspended until July due to coronavirus

The work of the grand jury and the jury selection process are also suspended until July.

UCO is the worst of the state’s main public services for helping low-income families, say environmental groups

Orlando’s utility is being assailed by environmental and smart energy groups as horribly stingy compared to other major Florida utilities by giving customers the ability to conserve electricity and cut bills as the pandemic hits. coronavirus triggers economic distress.

Florida correctional officers say they were told not to wear masks and that they did not have adequate protections as the coronavirus began to spread in prisons

Coronavirus cases in the state’s massive prison system exploded, with 373 detainees and 167 prison officers tested positive in 33 prisons, the agency said.s Sunday report. The death toll also continued to climb: two other detainees died after testing positive for COVID-19 last week, bringing the total to seven. The FDC detains approximately 94,000 detainees and has approximately 24,000 employees at full-time.

As COVID-19 cases soar, state correctional officers have complained that a lack of planning and preparation – such as early temperature checks, aggressive testing or personal protective equipment , including the masks – left them needlessly exposed, as well as their families and detainees in their facilities.

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April collections are expected to be worse: Walt Disney World did not close until mid-March, for example, and DeSantis did not issue a statewide shelter order before At the beginning of April.

Local Coronavirus Victims: Their Lives Remember

  • A party girl who witnessed WWI and 9/11, Ada Ficarra’s story is one of survival, said daughter Liz Starr. Born in the small town of Porto Empedocle, Sicily, Ficarra died on April 26 at Sonata West, an assisted living center in Winter Garden, where she lived since 2018. She was 79 years old.
  • Central Florida owes a debt of gratitude to Dr. Neil G. Powell for many of the brightest smiles in the region. Powell was not just a dentist, but an organizer of the dental community. The Orlando resident died on April 22 at the age of 93 of COVID-19-related pneumonia. An Air Force veteran who fought in World War II, Powell grew up in Sanford and was President of the Florida Society of Dentistry for Children, the Orange County Dental Society, the Central District Dental Society and the Florida Dental Association. He was part of the National American Dental Association.
  • Gene Wilkinson of Altamonte Springs, who died of complications from COVID-19, made ski trips across Europe, traveled regularly to Vail, played volleyball and enjoyed the games of cornhole with his family. In the Orlando area, he also found a community in the Beach Boppers. The group gathered at the Elks Lodge in Winter Park – where Gene was also a member – to dance jitterbug and other swing styles.
  • First, they lost their mom. Less than a month later, their father died – both victims of a coronavirus. As the children packed their bags and cleaned the house to prepare it for sale, they discovered family treasures like a family Bible passed down from generation to generation and their grandfather’s medals to the US Air Force. Bano Carlos, 73, died on March 30; her 75-year-old husband Bob fought with a fan until his death on April 24.

Wear disposable gloves when cleaning and disinfecting surfaces. Gloves should be discarded after each cleaning. If reusable gloves are used, these gloves must be dedicated to cleaning and disinfecting surfaces for COVID-19 and must not be used for other purposes.

Call your health care provider if you have cough, fever, shortness of breath, chills, repeated tremors with chills, muscle pain, headache, throat throat, and new taste loss or smell – and you have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19.

  • Avoid close contact with sick people.
  • Stay home when you are sick and avoid contact with unhealthy people.
  • Do not touch your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue away.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the toilet, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • Clean and disinfect affected objects and surfaces with a regular household spray or cleaning cloth.

Follow these recommendations for the use of a face mask: the CDC now recommends wearing cloth face covers in public places where other measures of social distancing are difficult to maintain (for example, grocery stores and pharmacies ), especially in areas of significant community transmission. Follow these guidelines for using a cloth mask.

Questions? Here are the numbers to call

The Florida Department of Health has set up a call center to answer questions about the coronavirus. There is also a number for Orange County.

The Florida Department of Health number is 1-866-779-6121 and is available Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Residents can also email questions to [email protected]

In Orange County, the number to call is 407-723-5004; it is available Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For accurate and up-to-date information, visit

This article originally appeared on OrlandoSentinel.com. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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