Florida COVID update: 17,093 new daily cases, 110,724 seen in the last week

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Florida reported 17,093 new COVID cases to the federal government Thursday, the ninth consecutive day of daily COVID cases over 10,000, as the state battles a contagious delta variant coming up against pockets of people who remain unvaccinated and are filling up hospital intensive-care units.

Florida, which represents about 6.5% of the U.S. population, is accounting for about 21% of the country’s new cases, based on the data the state is reporting to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Florida’s seven-day average of new cases was 14,757 as of July 29, levels not seen since January, Florida’s worst month of the pandemic. The state also reported 75 new deaths.

From July 23 to July 29, the number of new Florida resident COVID cases jumped by 110,724, a 51 percent gain, and deaths rose by 409, 45 percent higher, compared to the weekly report the state published last Friday, according to the Florida Department of Health.

Last week’s report, for the seven-day period ended July 22, recorded 73,166 new cases and 282 new deaths.

The state’s seven-day percent positivity rate increased from 15.1% to 18.1%; the state sits at a 17.8% positivity rate since the pandemic began, according to Florida’s DOH.

The high caseloads — and the most severe cases — are primarily due to unvaccinated individuals contracting the virus, public health experts say, calling it a “pandemic of the unvaccinated.”

The Florida Hospital Association reported there were 9,329 hospitalizations in the state as of Friday.

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The rising cases and hospitalizations have pushed South Florida hospitals to limit visitations again. That, along with the CDC’s updated recommendation that everyone, including fully vaccinated people, wear masks indoors and in schools in areas where there is “substantial and high transmission,” pushed Miami-Dade and Broward counties to reimpose mask mandates in county-owned buildings and facilities this week.

Palm Beach County on Friday announced it would be implementing similar measures on Monday.

All of Florida, with the exception of Glades County in Central Florida, has a “high” level of community transmission, according to the CDC. Glades County is considered to have a “substantial” level of community transmission.

Gov. Ron DeSantis reaffirmed during a Friday news conference in Cape Coral that there would be no lockdowns, no school closures or mask mandates in Florida. He also issued an executive order Friday that would direct the state’s health and education department to create rules that would stop mask mandates in schools and let parents decide if they want their child to wear a mask or not.

The order could affect the newly issued mask mandate for Broward County Public Schools. On Wednesday, the Broward School Board voted unanimously to impose the mask mandate on all students, teachers and staff when schools begin on Aug. 18.

January was the worst month of the Florida pandemic, with daily case counts routinely topping 10,000. That followed a surge last July, when daily case counts also topped 10,000. The latter half of July 2021 has been Florida’s third COVID-19 surge.

Cumulatively, Florida has recorded at least 2,634,234 confirmed COVID cases statewide and 39,823 deaths as of Friday, according to the state.

More than 10 million Floridians have completed the two-dose series of Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna, or have completed Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine, or about 52.5 percent of an estimated 19.1 million eligible residents, according to Florida’s weekly COVID reports.

Another 1.7 million have completed their first vaccine dosage, bringing the total number of Floridians who have been fully or partially vaccinated to around 11.7 million, or 61 percent of the state’s vaccine-eligible population, according to the state report.

Do you want a COVID vaccine? Here’s where to get your shot in Miami-Dade and Broward

COVID-19 cases and vaccines in South Florida

The Miami Herald can no longer include new deaths by county because the state stopped classifying deaths by county in its report. Florida’s DOH no longer includes daily county case changes, so weekly averages were used.

Miami-Dade County reported 15,584 new resident cases in the week ending July 29, according to the Florida health department.

In Miami-Dade, 2,016,473, or 74.2% of the county’s total population, have received at least one dose of the vaccine, according to the CDC. Only 1,656,027 people are fully vaccinated, or 61% of the county’s total population.

85.8% of the population 12 years old and over, 88.3% of people 18 and older, and 99.4% of people 65 and older have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

The county’s seven-day positivity rate increased from 10.1% to 12.1%, according to the Florida DOH.

Broward County reported 9,081 new resident cases in the week ending July 29, according to the Florida health department.

In Broward, 1,220,159 people have received at least one dose of the vaccine, or 62.5% of the total population, according to the CDC. Only 1,004,960 people are fully vaccinated, or 51.5% of the county’s total population.

72.5% of the population 12 years old and over, 74.8% of people 18 and older, and 94.9% of people 65 and older have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

The county’s seven-day positivity rate increased from 10.9% to 14%, according to the Florida DOH.

Palm Beach County reported 5,958 new resident cases in the week ending July 29, according to the Florida health department.

In Palm Beach, 869,555 have received at least one dose of the vaccine, or 58.1% of the total population, according to the CDC. Only 753,375 people are fully vaccinated, or 50.3% of the county’s total population.

66.3% of people 12 years old and over, 68.6% of people 18 and older, and 88.7% of people 65 and older have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

The county’s seven-day positivity rate increased from 12.5% to 15.5%, according to the Florida DOH.

Monroe County reported 247 new resident cases in the week ending July 29, according to the Florida health department.

In Monroe, 51,964 have received at least one dose of the vaccine, or 70% of the total population, according to the CDC. Only 43,815 people are fully vaccinated, or 59% of the county’s total population.

78% of people 12 years old and over, 80.7% of people 18 and older, and 99.9% of people 65 and older have received at least one dose of the vaccine,

The county’s seven-day positivity rate increased from 11.6% to 16.2%, according to the Florida DOH.

Manatee County reported 1,547 new resident cases in the week ending July 29, according to the Florida health department.

In Manatee, 217,201 have received at least one dose of the vaccine, or 53.9% of the total population, according to the CDC. Only 186,799 people are fully vaccinated, or 46.3% of the county’s total population.

60.9% of people 12 years old and over, 63.5% of people 18 and older, and 86.8% of people 65 and older have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

The county’s seven-day positivity rate increased from 15.4% to 17.5%, according to the Florida DOH.

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