FL closing in on 900,000 COVID-19 infections; death toll at 17,518 residents

Novel coronavirus SARS CoV2, which causes COVID-19. Meanwhile, new COVID mutations called variants are now spreading across the U.S. Microphotography by National Institute on Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

The Florida Department of Health on Sunday reported 885,201 COVID-19 infections, up by 875,096 cases the day before.

The jump of more than 10,000 cases between Saturday and Sunday pushes Florida even closer to the 900,000 mark for COVID-19 infections.

Only two other states have reached that mark — Texas and California — and those states have already exceeded 1 million cases, according to a New York Times analysis.

Thus far, Florida has not been included in the recent surge of cases in the Midwest and other parts of country that have created new COVID restrictions for residents.

But concern and debate continues in Florida over whether all residents should wear masks; if families should still send their children to brick-and-mortar buildings for in-class instruction, and how restaurants and other businesses should handle safety precautions.

Miami-Dade County now has more than 200,000 infections — 202,644 to be exact. Broward has the second highest number, 95,311, followed by Palm Beach, at 58,396. The three counties have been at the epicenter of the pandemic for some nine months now.

Two other counties — Hillsborough and Orange — now have more than 50,000 infections.

The Department of Health on Sunday also reported 17,518 resident deaths, up from 17,489 the day before.

Diane Rado
Diane Rado has covered state and local government and public schools in six states over some 30 years, focusing on policy and investigative stories as well as legislative and political reporting. She spent most of her career at the St. Petersburg (Tampa Bay) Times and the Chicago Tribune. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and did a fellowship in education reform at the University of Michigan in 1999-2000. She is married to a journalist and has three adult children.