Florida’s weekly COVID update: Cases surging with 45,449 new cases, 1 in 5 cases in U.S.

·7 min read

In a sign of Florida’s resurgent COVID cases, the Florida Department of Health on Friday announced 45,449 new resident cases of COVID-19 since July 9, nearly double the level of new statewide cases from last week and more than four times the levels of mid-June.

The state also reported 231 new deaths, up from 172 new deaths from July 9, the last time the state published its weekly COVID report.

Last Friday, the state reported 23,747 new COVID-19 cases, a cumulative total of the state’s 67 counties. New weekly case totals have been steadily increasing since last month when state health officials reported 10,095 cases from June 11-17.

On Friday, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky spoke at the White House explaining that the new cases are stemming primarily from people who are not vaccinated.

Florida accounts for 1 in 5 of new cases in the U.S.

“This is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated,” Walensky said. “We are seeing outbreaks in parts of the country that have low vaccination coverage because unvaccinated people are at risk. And communities that are fully vaccinated are generally faring well.”

Jeff Zients, the White House COVID-19 response coordinator, said just four states are accounting for more than 40% of all U.S. cases in the past week, with one in five of all cases occurring in Florida alone. A White House spokesman later identified the other states as Texas, Missouri and Arkansas.

Florida accounts for roughly 6.5 percent of the total U.S. population, so with 20 percent of the cases stemming from Florida, the new cases are disproportionately higher than the state’s population.

Zients said most of the cases were occurring among “unvaccinated individuals.”

But, he noted, vaccinated rates are rising.

“Importantly, states with the highest case rates are seeing their vaccination rates go up,” Zients said. “In fact in the past week, the five states with the highest case rates — Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Missouri and Nevada — “a higher rate of people getting vaccinated than the national average.” Case rates are based on a per-capita basis.

In the past 10 days, 5 million Americans have received a vaccine, he said.

The Florida Department of Health had a similar assessment of the state’s recent increase in new cases.

Wessam Khoury, communications director for Florida’s DOH, said vaccinations have increased in the state while the total number of new COVID-19 cases has decreased “significantly over time.”

Last July, for example, was the worst month of the Florida pandemic, with daily case counts routinely topping 10,000, and spiking to over 15,000 new cases statewide on July 12, 2020. The health department is no longer reporting daily case numbers, just weekly cumulative counts.

“It is also important to recognize that CDC guidance has shifted to focus testing on symptomatic individuals,” Khoury added. “As such, testing frequency among healthy individuals has decreased compared to the start of the pandemic.”

The state has recorded a known total of at least 2,450,344 coronavirus cases and 39,132 deaths since the pandemic began in March 2020.

Since December, the number of new deaths in Florida has decreased by 94 percent and the number of new cases has dropped by 83 percent, Khoury said.

The totals do not represent non-Florida resident cases and deaths — people who either contracted the disease or died from it while in Florida — because the state stopped reporting those metrics in late May when it pulled its daily reports. At that time, there were 744 non-resident deaths and 43,535 non-resident cases, cumulatively.

The state’s seven-day percent positivity rate increased from 7.8% to 11.5%; the state sits at a 17% positivity rate since the pandemic began. The seven-day case average for Florida increased from about 3,392 to 6,492.

More than 9.7 million Floridians have completed the two-dose series of Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna, or have completed Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine. Another 1.5 million have completed their first vaccine dosage, bringing the total number of Floridians who have been fully or partially vaccinated to around 11.3 million, or 59 percent of Floridians who are 12 and older.

COVID-19 in Florida

Here’s a breakdown of how many new COVID-19 cases were reported this past week in South Florida and Manatee County. The Miami Herald can no longer include new deaths because the state stopped classifying deaths by county in its report.

Miami-Dade County reported 7,062 new resident cases in the week ending July 15, according to the health department.

The Miami Herald calculates there were 6,969 new resident cases based on released weekly reports.

The county has recorded at least 522,734 confirmed cases and 6,472 deaths.

In Miami-Dade, 1,888,130 people, or about 75% of eligible residents, have received at least one dose of the vaccine, the state reported.

Broward County reported 3,850 new reported resident cases for the week ending July 15, according to the health department.

The Miami Herald calculates there were 3,828 new resident cases based on released weekly reports.

The county has now recorded at least 256,264 confirmed cases and 3,079 deaths.

In Broward, 1,136,850 people, or about 67% of residents 12 years old and older, have received at least one dose of the vaccine, the state reported.

Palm Beach County reported 2,483 new reported resident cases as of the week ending July 15, according to the health department.

The Miami Herald calculates there were 2,488 new resident cases based on released weekly reports.

The county has now recorded at least 155,617 confirmed cases and 2,883 deaths.

In Palm Beach County, 820,849 people, or about 63% of residents 12 years old and older, have received at least one dose of the vaccine, the state reported.

Monroe County reported 94 new reported resident cases as of the week ending July 15, according to the health department.

The Miami Herald calculates there were 93 new resident cases based on released weekly reports.

The county has now recorded at least 7,420 confirmed cases and 52 deaths.

In the Florida Keys, 46,949 people, or about 69% of residents 12 years old and older, have received at least one dose of the vaccine, the state reported.

Manatee County reported 657 new reported resident cases as of the week ended July 15, according to the health department.

The Miami Herald calculates there were 655 new resident cases based on released weekly reports.

The county has now recorded at least 41,491 confirmed cases and 689 deaths.

In Manatee, 204,528 people, or about 57% of residents 12 years old and older, have received at least one dose of the vaccine, the state reported.

Florida COVID-19 Variant Cases

Several variants of COVID-19 have proliferated since the beginning of the pandemic. There are eight variants currently being tracked across the globe.

Four of the variants have been classified as variants of concern by the CDC and World Health Organization: Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta.

All the variants of concern have been recorded in Florida, with Miami-Dade having the most variant cases at 4,545 this year.

Since the beginning of this year to July 15, the Florida Department of Health has released the following variant data:

Alpha: There have been 19,438 COVID-19 cases linked to the Alpha variant this year in Florida. The state also reported 538 hospitalizations from the variant.

Over the last 15 days, 3,361 more Alpha variant cases were reported and 190 more hospitalizations.

Beta: There have been 103 COVID-19 cases linked to the Beta variant. The state also reported six hospitalizations from the variant.

Over the last 15 days, 19 more Beta variant cases were reported and two more hospitalizations.

Gamma: There have been 2,502 COVID-19 cases linked to the Gamma variant. The state also reported 111 hospitalizations from the variant.

Over the last 15 days, 957 more Gamma variant cases were reported and 60 more hospitalizations.

Delta: There have been 877 COVID-19 cases linked to the Delta variant. The state also reported 29 hospitalizations from the variant.

The Florida Department of Health did not report Delta variant cases in Friday’s report. The state also did not include variant breakdowns per county.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting