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The number of new COVID cases jumped in Florida over the past week, as the positivity rate continued to go in the wrong direction.
Florida on Friday reported a 48% increase in new COVID cases for the week ending July 8. There were 23,697 new cases reported for the week, up from 15,978 for the previous week.
The numbers come from a report by the Florida Department of Health, issued now on a weekly basis, rather than daily.
Test positivity took a big jump, too, rising from 5.2% to 7.8%.
Even as case counts rise, Floridians are shedding their masks. As of July 1, Gov. Ron DeSantis has suspended all outstanding local COVID-19 emergency orders and related public health restrictions.
For the week ending July 9, the largest number of new COVID cases were found among people in the 30- to 39-year-old age group. In total, 2.4 million people in Florida have tested positive for COVID.
- Palm Beach County reported 1,378 additional cases, up from 909 a week prior. The total number of confirmed cases in the county stands at 150,456.
- Broward County reported 2,128 additional cases, up from 1,500 a week prior. The total number of confirmed cases in the county stands at 249,434.
- Miami-Dade County reported 4,362 new cases, up from 3,059 a week prior. The total number of confirmed cases in the county stands at 508,841.
Public health experts say the virus is considered under control when the COVID-19 test positivity rate is under 5%. Florida often has exceeded 5% in its widely publicized calculation for assessing the rate for testing of residents.
The state reported a positivity rate of 7.8% on Friday, up from 5.2% the week before. This method of calculating positivity counts new infections only but also counts repeat negative tests, which skews the figure downward.
In South Florida, the positivity rate was 5.5% in Broward, up from 3.9% a week earlier; 6.9% in Palm Beach, up from 4.3% a week earlier; and 5.3% in Miami-Dade, up from 3.6% a week earlier.
Across the state, 2,369 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 for the seven-day period ending June 29, according to the latest White House report. In comparison, 1,868 were hospitalized the previous week. A week earlier, 1,724 people were hospitalized with COVID-19.
On Friday, the state reported 172 additional deaths from COVID-19. Last week there were 213 additional deaths.
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The state’s pandemic data report shows a total of 38,157 Floridians have died from COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic.
Vaccinations continued to decline. A total of 207,089 doses were administered for the week, compared with 248,721 doses a week earlier.
As of Friday, 58% of Floridians have been received at least one dose. More than 11.1 million Floridians have had one or more doses of a COVID vaccine as of Friday.
In Florida, 1.5 million people have received their first dose of the vaccine, and 9.6 million have completed the series of two doses required to be fully vaccinated.
The 65-and-older age group represents the largest number of people vaccinated.
Sun Sentinel health reporter Cindy Goodman can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.