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Local News

Florida Passes New York to Become State with the Highest Number of Coronavirus Cases

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Florida Passes New York to Become State with the Highest Number of Coronavirus Cases

2020-07-27 15:45:41

By Laura Tucker, Staff writer; Image: COVID-19 Test (Image source: Public domain)

This isn't a time to strive for being No. 1. No one wants to become the state with the highest number of coronavirus cases so far. While New York was formerly the epicenter of the United States, it's not No. 1 in cases, that title belongs to California. And now New York lost No. 2 to Florida. And that's because the state had a great reopening plan and is sticking to it.

According to John Hopkins University data, Florida has had 414,511 confirmed cases since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, while New York has only had 411,200. California has had 440,000. New York, however, retains first place with the number of deaths with 32,600. Florida has had a mere 5,800.

What is particularly alarming about the number of confirmed cases statistic, at least for Floridians, is that it shows how dangerous the spike in the number of cases is. It may also show how far we've come with the virus in terms of how to treat it.

New York Gov. Cuomo was also proactive in issuing a stay-at-home order early on during the pandemic and closed many businesses. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, meanwhile, refused to close down some of the beaches and refused to fully close the state, then reopened quickly. COVID-19 came roaring back to the state. 

The Florida Department of Health reported more than 12,000 new cases on Friday, mostly because of infections in Miami-Dade County and the rest of Florida. Of all the people tested on Friday, 11.43 percent received positive diagnoses. The following day there were only 9,344 cases and 78 fatalities. New York had 536 infections out of 53,568, around 1 percent.

"The infection rate is low because we have done an intelligent, phased reopening," said Cuomo, who condemned the Rupert Murdoch-owned New York Post and Wall Street Journal for urging states to reopen quickly.

"What they are advocating has been demonstrated to be wrong and to be a failure," continued Cuomo. "Florida listened to New York Post. Texas listened to the Wall Street Journal. Arizona listened to the  Wall Street Journal and the New York Post. That was wrong."

Residents in Florida and California, and 32 other states, are now required to go through a two-week quarantine when entering New York.

Health experts believe New York's decreasing rate of new cases is mostly due to the younger population. On Sunday, the median age for Florida's new cases was 41, after it was in the mid-50s consistently,then dropped suddenly to the mid-30s when the state began opening up again.

 Florida did have one small victory on Sunday, as it put an end to the three-day streak of more than 10,000 new infections each day. Still, there were other records being broken for the number of fatalities and hospitalizations in a span of seven days.

From Sunday to Sunday, there were 970 deaths in Florida and 3,452 patients hospitalized with COVID-19. One week earlier, there were only 758 deaths and 3,021 hospitalizations. Perhaps because of Florida, the  United States as a whole ended its four-day run of more than 1,000 deaths with only 921. 

No matter how many times there are efforts to paint the novel coronavirus the same as the flu, COVID-19 is the deadliest infectious disease in Florida this year, according to Department of Health data. It's killing thee times more Floridians each day than AIDS, viral hepatitis, the flu, and pneumonia combined.

 

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