After two days in which the state reported fewer than 10,000 cases, Florida’s Department of Health on Wednesday confirmed 11,914 additional cases of COVID-19. The bump brings the state’s known total to 1,601,011. Also, 142 resident deaths were announced, bringing the resident death toll to 24,578.
Three new non-resident deaths were also announced, bringing the non-resident toll to 387. The total death count for the state is 24,965, the fourth highest in the country after New York, California and Texas, according to the New York Times database of U.S. cases.
Miami-Dade has now topped 350,000 cases, and the Florida Keys went over 5,000.
According to the state’s Wednesday COVID-19 vaccine report, 1,122,405 people have been vaccinated in Florida — with 111,188 of those people having completed the series of two doses.
Of those who completed the two-dose vaccination, 17,784 were Miami-Dade residents, 14,777 were Broward residents, 272 were Monroe residents, and 4,034 were Palm Beach County residents.
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Confirmed COVID-19 cases in South Florida
▪ Miami-Dade County reported 2,287 additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 and eight new deaths, according to Florida’s Department of Health. The county now has 350,252 confirmed cases and 4,630 deaths. Percent positivity for new cases increased from 8.40% to 10.71%, from Monday to Tuesday.
▪ Broward County reported 1,110 additional confirmed cases of the disease and eight new deaths. The county has a known total of 161,624 cases and 1,998 deaths. Percent positivity for new cases decreased from 8.12% to 7.99% from Monday to Tuesday.
▪ Palm Beach County saw 687 additional confirmed cases and two new deaths. The county now has 99,379 confirmed cases and 2,061 deaths. Percent positivity for new cases increased from 9.47% to 10.39%, from Monday to Tuesday.
▪ Monroe County confirmed 31 additional cases and no new deaths. The county has a known total of 5,024 cases and 37 deaths. Percent positivity for new cases increased from 9.87% to 11.69%, from Monday to Tuesday.
COVID-19 hospitalizations in Florida
One of the tools that officials rely on to determine whether the coronavirus situation is improving in the state is hospitalization data. Unlike testing, which might be limited or takes days to report results, hospitalizations can help give officials a real-time snapshot of how many people are severely ill with COVID-19.
The Florida Agency for Health Care Administration reports the number of patients hospitalized statewide with a “primary diagnosis of COVID.” The data, which is updated at least every hour, does not distinguish between the number of COVID-19 patients in hospital intensive care units and those in acute-care beds, which require less attention from nurses.
As of 3:45 p.m. Wednesday, there were 7,141 COVID-19 patients admitted into hospitals throughout the state, according to the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration dashboard. This is at mid-August levels, when more than 7,000 COVID-19 patients were admitted into hospitals throughout the state.
Of Wednesday’s hospitalizations, 1,028 were in Miami-Dade, 632 in Broward, 450 in Palm Beach and five in Monroe, according to the agency.
Florida’s current hospitalization data does not always match the hospitalization data reported in Miami-Dade’s “New Normal” dashboard. Officials say this could be for a number of reasons, including the frequency of daily updates.
On Wednesday, Miami-Dade hospitalizations for COVID-19 complications decreased from 1,183 to 1,095, according to Miami-Dade County’s “New Normal” dashboard. According to Wednesday’s data, 215 people were discharged and 102 people were admitted.
The state has had a total of 68,478 Florida residents hospitalized for COVID-19-related complications, according to Florida’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard.
COVID-19 Testing in Florida
Testing in Florida has seen steady growth since the COVID-19 crisis began.
Testing, like hospitalizations, helps officials determine the virus’ progress and plays a role in deciding whether it is safe to lift stay-at-home orders and loosen restrictions.
Epidemiologists use the testing data to create a positivity rate. The rate helps them determine if a rise in cases is because of an increase in testing or whether there’s increased transmission of the virus in the community.
On Wednesday, Florida’s Department of Health reported the results of 108,294 people tested on Tuesday. The positivity rate of new cases (people who tested positive for the first time) increased from 8.97% to 10.73%.