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Coronavirus in Florida: State reports 5,459 new cases, 118 deaths

The percent positive for new cases in people who live in Florida is 5.61 percent.
Credit: AP Photo/Chris O'Meara
A woman wearing a protective mask checks her phone after leaving a county office building Tuesday, June 23, 2020, in Tampa, Fla.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida added 5,459 coronavirus cases for Feb. 26, according to the Florida Department of Health's latest report.

A total of 1,903,682 people in Florida have tested positive for coronavirus since the pandemic began.

On Saturday, the state reported another 110 Floridians and eight non-residents had died after testing positive for COVID-19. That brings the total to 30,734 residents and 546 non-residents who have died since the pandemic began – a total of 31,280 deaths in the state related to the virus.

Those numbers do not necessarily mean those people died Friday, 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: Florida Department of Health

As for testing, the health department reported 5.61 percent of 115,976 test results returned from labs were positive for coronavirus through Feb. 26.

The median age of Floridians testing positive is 38.

As for hospitalizations, 3,723 people in Florida were hospitalized with coronavirus as their primary diagnosis as of Saturday afternoonOf those, 865 patients were in the Tampa Bay area.

Statewide, a total of 79,242 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 mid-January:

  • January 15: 12,119
  • January 16: 11,093
  • January 17: 8,002
  • January 18: 9,816
  • January 19: 11,914
  • January 20: 12,873
  • January 21: 13,719
  • January 22: 12,311
  • January 23: 9,535
  • January 24: 8,720
  • January 25: 9,594
  • January 26: 8,408 
  • January 27: 11,423
  • January 28: 10,976
  • January 29: 15,019
  • January 30: 7,788
  • January 31: 5,730
  • February 1: 10,533
  • February 2: 6,979
  • February 3: 7,711
  • February 4: 11,543
  • February 5: 7,486
  • February 6: 6,624
  • February 7: 5,737
  • February 8: 7,023
  • February 9: 7,537 
  • February 10: 8,525
  • February 11: 7,617
  • February 12: 7,515 
  • February 13: 5,436
  • February 14: 3,615
  • February 15: 6,297
  • February 16: 7,342 
  • February 17: 5,117
  • February 18: 6,683
  • February 19: 7,280
  • February 20: 5,065
  • February 21: 4,151
  • February 22: 5,610
  • February 23: 7,128 
  • February 24: 6,640
  • February 25: 5,922 
  • February 26: 5,459
Credit: Florida Department of Health

Understanding the numbers

Since mid-July, daily reported COVID-19 cases in Florida remained under 10,000. And, between Sept. 1 and Oct. 16, daily reported cases stayed below 4,000.

That changed on Nov. 15, when the state reported 10,105 new cases for the day prior.

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 reported 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. The United States has more than 28.5 million coronavirus cases as of Feb. 27, the highest recorded number in the world, according to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.

California and Texas have 3.5 and 2.6 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.

Credit: Florida Department of Health

Hospitalizations and ICU bed availability

New cases have been on the decrease in recent weeks, but what about hospitalizations?

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 Feb. 27, 3,723 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 as their primary diagnosis statewide, and 865 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 79,242 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 1:30 p.m. Feb. 27.

Citrus:

  • 29 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 57 of 294 total staffed hospital beds are available

DeSoto:

  • 5 COVID-19 hospitalization
  • 36 of 58 total staffed hospital beds are available

Hardee:

  • 0 COVID-19 hospitalization
  • 1 of 23 total staffed hospital beds are available

Hernando:

  • 49 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 213 of 725 total staffed hospital beds are available

Highlands:

  • 36 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 25 of 268 total staffed hospital beds are available

Hillsborough:

  • 202 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 864 of 4,137 total staffed hospital beds are available

Manatee:

  • 52 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 108 of 752 total staffed hospital beds are available

Pasco:

  • 72 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 358 of 1,467 total staffed hospital beds are available

Pinellas: 

  • 207 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 737 of 3,141 total staffed hospital beds are available

Polk: 

  • 150 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 364 of 1,716 total staffed hospital beds are available

Sarasota: 

  • 63 COVID-19 hospitalizations
  • 154 of 1,334 total staffed hospital beds are available

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