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Florida reports 2,482 new COVID-19 cases, 22 new deaths

The percent positivity for new cases is 4.36 percent.
Credit: AP
Jason Rodriguez, right, a University of Florida Pharmacy student, gives Camila Gutierrez, 21, a junior at Florida International University from Bolivia, the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at the Christine E. Lynn Rehabilitation Center in Jackson Memorial hospital, Thursday, April 15, 2021, in Miami. Jackson Health System launched a COVID-19 vaccination initiative with colleges and universities in Miami-Dade County, to allow students to sign up for vaccinations through an online portal. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida added 2,482 new coronavirus cases for May 15, according to the Florida Department of Health's latest report.

A total of 2,292,004 people in the state have tested positive for COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

On Sunday, the state reported another 19 Floridians and three non-residents had died after testing positive for COVID-19. That brings the total to 36,075 residents and 723 non-residents who have died since the pandemic began – a total of 36,798 deaths in the state related to the virus. 

Those numbers do not necessarily mean those people died Saturday, but rather the state learned of their deaths and added the number to the report that day. The state's line-by-line report, which you can read here, lists coronavirus deaths by the date the people tested positive for the virus, not the date they passed. 

Credit: 10 Tampa Bay

As for testing, the health department reported 4.36 percent of 89,356 test results returned from labs were positive for coronavirus through May 15.

As for hospitalizations, 2,410 people in Florida were hospitalized with coronavirus as their primary diagnosis as of Sunday afternoon. Of those, 532 patients were in the Tampa Bay area. 

Statewide, a total of 93,110 people in Florida were hospitalized with the virus at some point during the pandemic.

Here's a breakdown of new coronavirus cases reported to the state since the beginning of May:

  • May 1: 3,841
  • May 2: 3,078
  • May 3: 3,682
  • May 4: 4,394 
  • May 5: 4,504
  • May 6: 4,165
  • May 7: 3,977
  • May 83,231
  • May 9: 2,296
  • May 10: 3,263
  • May 11: 3,184
  • May 12: 4,064 
  • May 13: 3,590
  • May 14: 3,319
  • May 15: 2,482
Credit: 10 Tampa Bay

Understanding the numbers

Reported COVID-19 cases in Florida surged at the beginning of 2021, with most of January reporting more than 10,000 cases a day. And, the state didn't see percent positivity below 5 percent the entire month, with many daily reports in the double digits. 

Since Feb. 4, however, daily reported COVID-19 cases in Florida have remained under 10,000.

The highest single-day case number Florida has reported so far is 19,816 for Jan. 6. The report released on Jan. 2 of 31,518 newly-reported cases is higher, but that report combined updates for Dec. 31 and Jan. 1.

The lowest single-day case number the state has reported since early June is 738, confirmed on Sept. 28.

On Oct. 30, Florida became the third state to cross the 800,000 reported COVID-19 cases mark. Then, on Dec. 1, Florida became the third state to surpass 1 million confirmed cases. On March 20, Florida became the third state to surpass 2 million confirmed cases. The United States has more than 32.9 million coronavirus cases as of May 16, the highest recorded number in the world, according to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.

California and Texas have 3.7 and 2.9 million cases, respectively.

Florida's report released on Aug. 11 of 277 newly confirmed deaths was the highest seen from the state in a single day's report.

The state added a section to its daily report (on page 5) that shows deaths by date of death. This data has been reported daily on Florida's COVID-19 dashboard. The graph for deaths by date of death is subject to change, though, because the information reported to the state can be delayed up to two weeks. So, for consistency, our charts have stuck to new deaths added by the date they were added. For transparency, you can always reference the state's data here.

The positivity rate is crucial for reopening. The World Health Organization has repeatedly said it must remain at 5 percent or lower for a 14-day span for the agency to recommend reopening.

However, it can be somewhat misleading: The number of people tested statewide varies each day. Health officials say they would like to see a high – but steady – number of people tested every day and a suppressed percent positivity figure.

Florida has been in "Phase 3" of reopening since Sept. 25, when Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an order guaranteeing restaurants the right to operate and lifting state-level capacity restrictions on them.

On April 5, 2021, the COVID-19 vaccine age eligibility opened to all adults in Florida.

Credit: 10 Tampa Bay

Hospitalizations and ICU bed availability

Tracking hospitalizations got easier on July 10 when the Agency for Health Care Administration began publishing a spreadsheet with the number of people currently checked in for coronavirus-related complications in Florida. The data only includes people whose "primary diagnosis" was COVID-19.

As of May 16, 2,410 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 as their primary diagnosis statewide, and 532 of them were in the Tampa Bay area. Those numbers are frequently updated, and you can click here for the most recent data, which is also broken down by county.

Since the pandemic began, the state confirms a total of 93,110 residents were hospitalized at some point during their illness.

The Agency for Healthcare Administration (AHCA) also updates total hospital bed and ICU availability by county.

Click here for a breakdown of adult and pediatric ICU bed availability by county. You can also check ICU availability by the hospital.

Hospitalizations around Tampa Bay and total staffed hospital bed capacity status:

**Data as of 2 p.m. May 16

Citrus:

  • 4 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 86 of 289 total staffed hospital beds are available

DeSoto:

  • 0 COVID-19 hospitalization
  • 50 of 58 total staffed hospital beds are available

Hardee:

  • 0 COVID-19 hospitalization
  • 3 of 25 total staffed hospital beds are available

Hernando:

  • 20 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 254 of 746 total staffed hospital beds are available

Highlands:

  • 12 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 74 of 296 total staffed hospital beds are available

Hillsborough:

  • 170 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 931 of 4,234 total staffed hospital beds are available

Manatee:

  • 35 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 108 of 784 total staffed hospital beds are available

Pasco:

  • 63 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 278 of 1,435 total staffed hospital beds are available

Pinellas: 

  • 96 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 832 of 3,183 total staffed hospital beds are available

Polk: 

  • 104 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 456 of 1,729 total staffed hospital beds are available

Sarasota: 

  • 28 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 208 of 1,263 total staffed hospital beds are available