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COVID-19 in St. Petersburg: Cases climbing, deaths dropping

As cases continue to climb in St. Petersburg, leaders are encouraged to see death rates slightly dropping.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — With coronavirus numbers climbing in the wrong direction, Tampa Bay leaders are staying vigilant.

The St. Petersburg City Council came together Thursday for their first in-person meeting since the start of the pandemic.

The city's emergency manager, Amber Boulding briefed the council on the state of COVID-19 in the Sunshine City.

CONCERNING TREND

COVID cases are climbing across the state including in Pinellas County. Boulding showed council members a bar chart with daily COVID-19 cases. You can clearly see the spike in July, a drop off in September, and now a steady climb.

Credit: City of St. Petersburg

St. Pete is following the same trend as Pinellas County. Two weeks ago the city was averaging 32 new coronavirus cases a day. Now, we're looking at about 53 cases per day.

"It's definitely something we're watching, potentially worrisome with those cases if we continue to see them grow, "Boulding said.

ENCOURAGING DATA

While cases climb, deaths are stable in St. Petersburg, if not dropping a bit.

Boulding gave a couple reasons for that:

  • More testing: people get diagnosed earlier and can seek treatment sooner
  • Younger people are the ones getting sick lately: less likely to die from the coronavirus
  • Doctors have better treatment 
  • Mask wearing: medical experts are finding there's less viral load transmitted when people wear masks. Your mask could prevent you from getting a really bad case of the virus so you don't get as sick

Pinellas County has an average percent positivity of just under five percent. That means of all the tests being done, about five percent come back positive. It's the lowest of the ten biggest counties in Florida.

RELATED: What's percent positive? How to read COVID-19 data

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