COVID-19 infections climb to 658, and death toll to 12

New color-enhanced image of coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (in blue), which causes the dangerous respiratory disease COVID-19. Credit: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases-Rocky Mountain Lab

State health officials reported an additional 95 positive lab tests for COVID-19 on Saturday morning, bringing the total of positive cases to 658. Twelve patients have died, an addition of two since Friday evening.

Among Florida residents, the caseload as of 11 a.m. was 603, roughly split between results from Florida Department of Health and private labs running tests for the new coronavirus that’s been linked to the respiratory disease.

Fifty-five of the positive cases involved non-Florida residents who were diagnosed here. Public health officials were monitoring 2,076 patients.

Men accounted for 58 percent of the caseload and women 41 (in 1 percent the record wasn’t clear.) Accounting for age, the 60-69 demographic was worst-affected, making up 21 pecent of the caseload, but the 20-29 cohort didn’t go unscathed, representing 14 percent. Even the 10-19 group included 20 infections, 3 percent of the total. Detailed data here.

Cases have been reported in 41 of Florida’s 67 counties — including five new counties with at least one COVID-19 case: Baker, Bay, Highlands, Putnam and St. Lucie.

The biggest caseload was in Broward County, at 151. Miami-Dade County followed with 142, then Palm Beach with 45 and Hillsborough with 42.

Still unaffected, at least officially, were a broad swath of counties in the Big Bend region, running from Calhoun and Gulf counties to Columbia, Union, and Bradford counties, then south to Levy and Marion counties.

Alachua County represented an incursion into the clear area, having reported 21 cases. Away to the east, Flagler County had no reported cases. Neither did Holmes or Washington counties in the Panhandle.

Of the 11 counties reporting their first cases, travel-related origins of the infections predominated — this was the case in Escambia, Gadsden, Jackson, Martin, Monroe, Nassau, and Putnam counties.

Travel was not a factor in Baker and St. Lucie counties. In Bay and Highlands, the source was not clear, according to the agency database.

Michael Moline
Michael Moline has covered politics and the legal system for more than 30 years. He is a former managing editor of the San Francisco Daily Journal and former assistant managing editor of The National Law Journal. He began his career covering the Florida Capitol for United Press International. More recently, he wrote for Florida Politics.