As new coronavirus cases continue to spike in Florida, epidemiologists have deemed the state one of the epicenters of the pandemic in the United States.
Thursday's report from the Florida Department of Health shows the state reported another 8,935 cases on July 8. The state has yet to report a day in July where the number of new cases was fewer than 6,000.
Based on data released Thursday, 120 new COVID-19-related deaths were confirmed in Florida on July 8. That's now the highest number of deaths reported in a single day's data release in the state. The previous was 113 deaths reported in May.
Since March, a total of 232,718 positive coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Florida. The state passed the 200,000 cases mark over the weekend after hitting the 100,000 mark just two weeks ago.
Florida has now had more confirmed cases than Germany and France, according to data from Johns Hopkins University & Medicine. Germany has 83.02 million residents, which is more than 3.86 times the population of Florida. France has nearly 67 million residents -- more than three times Florida's population.
The highest number of new cases the state reported on a single day was 11,458 on July 4. That report also coincided with the most test results being submitted so far with more than 85,000 received from labs on July 3.
Thursday's report showed 51,700 test results turned in on July 8, with 18.39 percent being positive. That percentage is now the highest positivity rate for new cases the state has reported so far.
Here's a breakdown of the new coronavirus cases reported to the state by day:
- June 21: 2,926
- June 22: 3,286
- June 23: 5,508
- June 24: 5,004
- June 25: 8,942
- June 26: 9,585
- June 27: 8,530
- June 28: 5,266
- June 29: 6,093
- June 30: 6,563
- July 1: 10,109
- July 2: 9,488
- July 3: 11,458
- July 4: 10,059
- July 5: 6,336
- July 6: 7,347
- July 7: 9,989
- July 8: 8,935
Why does the state's dashboard look different?
The state's dashboard for new COVID-19 cases looks a little different than ours, at least for daily new cases. That's because the state is only tracking Florida residents, not total cases in Florida, on its dashboard. It tracks the latter in its daily report.
And, the chart on the state's website is regularly revised to say a case happened on one day instead of another.
For consistency, we've been tracking the total number of cases reported each day. Those totals don't change, so it's the most consistent way to measure trends, even if the state moves data around on its dashboard.
Here's a direct link to the state's data to examine yourself.
FULL BREAKDOWN: Florida coronavirus cases, deaths, hospitalizations, recoveries
It's hard to track just how many people are hospitalized with COVID-19 at any given point in Florida. Since the pandemic began four months ago, the state said a total of 17,167 residents have been hospitalized as of Thursday morning.
But, that number includes anyone who was hospitalized at any point during their illness. It does not show the number of people currently in the hospital for coronavirus.
The Agency for Healthcare Administration (AHCA) does update hospital bed and ICU availability by county. And, some counties have taken steps to show that information, including Pinellas County, which offers a daily look at coronavirus hospitalizations in the area.
Most counties don't say exactly how many of their beds are being occupied by coronavirus patients at any given moment, but we can use the total ICU bed occupancy as an indicator of how full hospitals are right now.
As of Thursday morning, 14.46 percent of Florida's 6,230 adult ICU beds were available. When it comes to the state's 589 pediatric ICU beds, 33.62 percent were available.
All that is according to the Agency for Health Care Administration's data.
For the Tampa Bay area, based on the data below, 135 of the area's 1,278 adult ICU beds were open as of Wednesday morning -- about 10 percent.
Around the Tampa Bay area, here is the breakdown:
Citrus: 5 of 40 adult ICU beds available
DeSoto: 2 of 8 adult ICU beds available
Hardee: No ICU data
Hernando: 6 of 61 adult ICU beds available
Highlands: 5 of 28 adult ICU beds available
Hillsborough: 27 of 385 adult ICU beds available
Manatee: 6 of 66 adult ICU beds available
Pasco: 3 of 126 adult ICU beds available
Pinellas: 36 of 296 adult ICU beds available
Polk: 15 of 166 adult ICU beds available
Sarasota: 30 of 115 adult ICU beds available
**Editor's Note: The state doesn't offer ICU availability for Hardee County. But, for some perspective: as of Sunday morning, two of the county's 25 hospital beds were available for an 8 percent availability.
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