State’s caseload climbs to 1,612; with 159 in NE Florida

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The Florida Department of Health’s update late Wednesday reported 56 people in Duval County have now tested positive, with 13 of them in the hospital. Alachua County how has 45, St. Johns is up to 26 cases; Clay reported 13, and there were two more in Putnam (now 5) and one each additional case in Baker (5) and Flagler (5) counties.

Those were among more than 200 new cases reported since Tuesday night, bring the statewide total to 1,682. There were two additional deaths reported overnight, but it not yet clear where in Florida those occurred.

Six people from Northeast Florida have died from the disease — all men — and three of them were in their 80s.

County-by-county breakdown of Northeast Florida cases

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All ages touched as Florida coronavirus cases continued to mount. The Florida Department of Health has identified with coronavirus in just the last three weeks is a baby boy and two 2-year-old girls have tested positive for COVID-19 in Broward County.

The health department’s data list the boy’s age as zero, making him the youngest person in the state known to be ill with the disease. One of the 2-year-olds to test positive for coronavirus is one of 37 cases reported in Alachua County.

Health officials listed both cases under “unknown” for travel-related and did not state whether either child had been in contact with someone who had tested positive for the virus.

Gov. Ron DeSantis has asked President Donald Trump to declare Florida a disaster area, saying the coronavirus outbreak is having a “drastic effect” on the state’s economy and medical providers.

In a letter to Trump, DeSantis wrote that Florida’s “hospitals, medical facilities, and first responders are facing challenges rarely experienced before.” and the state has already spent $208 million on related unemployment assistance, food stamps, disaster loans and mental health counseling.

Such a declaration would make Florida eligible for federal aid. This is no hurricane, but DeSantis wrote that the state’s medical system is already burdened and the situation will get worse, with limited testing showing more than 1,400 people infected and 17 deaths.

Many of Florida’s harder-hit municipalities ordered all their residents to shelter-in-place on Tuesday after DeSantis argued against a statewide order and blamed people flying in from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut for potentially spreading the coronavirus.

Gainesville and surrounding Alachua County, where the 36 confirmed cases include college students returning from Spring Break, also issued “stay at home” orders on Monday. Gainesville is the home of the University of Florida and a community college. All schools in Florida are closed.

Duval County is under a work-from-home mandate ordered Monday.

Around Florida, officials have restricted travel on the only two roads leading into the Florida Keys from the mainland. Monroe County announced Tuesday that southbound traffic stops will be in place near the county line on U.S. 1 and on State Road 905 by early Friday. The stations are meant to reinforce the island chain’s previous closure to visitors and non-residents.

The “Safer at Home” order went into effect Tuesday …read more

Source:: Headlines News4jax


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