Florida broke its daily cases record for COVID-19 as it reported 21,683 new cases last Friday. This new record exceeds the highest total it achieved even before the availability of COVID vaccines.
Florida #1 in COVID Daily Cases
According to federal health data released Saturday, Florida emerged as the top state with COVID-19 infections. Republican Governor Ron DeSantis continues to push for freedoms for Florida residents, resisting efforts to mask mandates and increasing vaccination rates.
Along with the state Legislature, DeSantis also limited local officials’ ability to impose restrictions that can help control the spread of the virus. For example, the Governor barred school districts from requiring students to wear masks when classes resume next month.
The latest numbers show how quickly the virus is quickly spreading across the state. A day earlier, Florida registered 17,093 new daily cases, by the following day it went up to 21,683. Previously, the highest number of daily cases was 19,334. This happened last January when vaccines were not approved for use.
409 Deaths This Week
Florida also reported 409 deaths this week. This brings the total state death toll to more than 39,000 since March 2020. The state’s peak occurred last year during August. About 1,266 workers died over a seven-day period.
DeSantis placed the blame on a seasonal increase. He said that more Floridians stayed indoors because of the hot weather. This made them prone to infection from the virus as the air conditioning continually circulated the virus. At this point, about 60% of Floridians 12 and older have already received their vaccination.
Nearing Last Year’s Peak
Last Friday, the Florida Hospital Association said that statewide COVID-19 hospitalizations are almost identical to last year’s peak numbers. In fact, AdventHealth’s Central Florida Division advised it would no longer be conducting non-emergency surgeries. This rule will free up resources for COVID-19 patients.
Meanwhile, Florida’s theme parks and amusement centers decided to implement mask mandates instead of closing down. Last Saturday, Universal Orlando Resort and SeaWorld began asking visitors to wear masks indoors.
The company also ordered employees to wear face coverings to protect against COVID-19. Employees will also return to practicing social distancing. In addition, the park also requested guests to abide by federal and local health guidelines by voluntarily wearing face coverings indoors. “The health and safety of our guests and team members are always our top priority,” Universal said in a statement.
Disney Also Requiring Masks
Meanwhile, in Orlando, Walt Disney World started requiring employees and guests older than 2 to wear masks beginning Friday. It also announced that all employees and non-union hourly workers will require proof of vaccination.
They will have 60 days to comply with the requirement. In addition, discussions with the workers’ union are ongoing regarding vaccinations. Also, all new hires will need full vaccinations before starting work.
Watch the 10 Tampa Bay video reporting saying that Florida records highest-ever new COVID-19 case total in a single day, CDC data shows:
What do you think about Florida’s situation regarding COVID-19 daily cases? Should the state tighten its policies to prevent the spread of the virus?
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