FL Reports 58K COVID Cases, Smashing Single-Day Record —​ Again

FLORIDA — For the fourth time in one week, Florida has broken its daily record for new COVID-19 cases reported in a single day.

On Thursday, 58,013 new cases were reported in the Sunshine State for Wednesday, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Florida broke its reporting record Wednesday when just shy of 47,000 new cases from Tuesday were initially added to the total count, beating the state’s Christmas Day record of 32,850 new COVID-19 cases reported. That number broke the state's previous record — set just the day before on Christmas Eve, when 31,758 new cases were reported.

The CDC has since adjusted these and other numbers reported in recent days. The agency now says the following number of cases were reported during the past week:

  • 58,013 cases reported for Wednesday, Dec. 29

  • 52,995 cases reported for Tuesday, Dec. 28

  • 33,567 cases reported for Monday, Dec. 27

  • 29,129 cases reported for Sunday, Dec. 26

  • 20,975 reported for Saturday, Dec. 25

  • 27,939 reported for Friday, Dec. 24

  • 32,196 reported for Thursday, Dec. 23

This means that over the past seven days, 254,814 new cases were reported in Florida, according to the CDC's latest data.

Florida had a new case positivity rate of 13.8 percent from Dec. 17-23, according to the Florida Department of Health's COVID-19 Weekly Situation Report. During that period, 125,201 new coronavirus cases and 28 deaths were reported.

That's a significant jump from the previous week, Dec. 10-16, when Florida saw a positivity rate of just 5.4 percent with 29,568 new cases and 39 deaths, according to state data. From Dec. 3-9, only 13,530 cases, a 2.6 percent positivity rate and 36 deaths were reported.

COVID-19 hospitalizations are also on the rise in Florida. There were 4,001 confirmed Thursday, according to the Florida Hospital Association.

Meanwhile, 3,321 coronavirus-related hospitalizations were recorded Wednesday, 2,674 on Tuesday and 2,019 on Monday, FHA said.

Federal health officials have also walked back week-old estimates claiming the highly contagious omicron variant is responsible for nearly 3 out of 4 new coronavirus cases in parts of the United States, including in Florida.

On Dec. 18, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 73 percent of new cases were linked to omicron. This week, however, the agency revised those figures, slashing the earlier estimate to 23 percent — a drop of nearly 50 percentage points.

The drastic change suggests that while omicron cases are on the rise, the variant is not infecting people at the rate the CDC had projected.

“There's no way around it, it is a huge swing that makes it seem like something went really wrong," Dr. Shruti Gohil, associate medical director at UC Irvine's School of Medicine, told National Public Radio. "But there is always a delay in the testing information that comes in, and that's what the public should take away.”

The new data comes a month after omicron was detected half a world away and days after Americans gathered for the holidays.

Despite this week’s revision, omicron cases are increasing nationwide. The variant accounted for nearly 59 percent of all new cases for the week ending on Dec. 25. The delta variant — the variant more likely to cause severe illness — still accounts for nearly 41 percent of new cases.

In the Southeast, which includes Florida, omicron cases outpace delta, according to the CDC. Data shows that 78.3 percent of all cases in the region are omicron, while 21.5 percent are delta. About .2 percent of cases are other variants.

In some regions of the country, the spike in omicron cases is significantly higher than the national average. The variant accounts for more than 88 percent of new infections in the Northeast and nearly 87 percent in the Texas region.

The delta variant had been dominant since June, and as recently as the end of November represented 99.5 percent of new cases.

Only about 33 percent of Americans have gotten their COVID-19 booster shots, which health officials say is the best defense against the omicron variant. About 62 percent of Americans are fully vaccinated but aren’t boosted, and health officials are worried about the nation’s ability to withstand a fifth wave of COVID-19.

For more information, go to the CDC data tracker.

This article originally appeared on the Bradenton Patch