Florida surpasses 10,000 coronavirus deaths

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Florida surpassed 10,000 deaths from COVID-19 on Wednesday, according to state figures, nearly six months since the state’s first case was identified.The state reported 174 new deaths on Wednesday, bringing its total since the start of the pandemic to 10,067.

California, New York, Texas and New Jersey are the only other states whose deaths from COVID-19 have reached five digits.

Even as deaths are increasing, the average number of weekly coronavirus cases in Florida has declined.

Earlier this summer, when the state reported an average of 11,000 cases per day, state officials touted the low death rate as a positive sign. But deaths still lag behind infections, and their numbers have increased rapidly.

Half of all deaths from COVID-19 in the state have occurred in the past month alone.

The state has reported fewer hospitalizations in recent days. About 5,300 people were in hospital with the virus as of Wednesday, according to the Agency for Health Care Administration.

According to state officials, Florida has now spent a full week with daily positivity rates below 10%. But the state’s health department would not count positive retests, only the initial negative test, leading to an inaccurate lower rate.

According to Johns Hopkins University, the state’s seven-day moving average positivity rate is 16.4%.

Statewide diagnostic testing has also declined.

On Monday, the health department reported the fewest tests processed since June, with 20,248. The seven-day moving average was nearly 33,000 tests, up from a high of nearly 66,000 in July.

Across the country, the COVID-19 pandemic is raging. There are nearly 5.5 million cases in the United States and 172,000 deaths to date.

COVID-19 is currently the third leading cause of death in the United States, behind only heart disease and cancer, eight months after the first case of coronavirus in the country was confirmed.



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