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Pinellas County’s cumulative total of confirmed cases of COVID-19 has increased to 2,523, according to the report released Tuesday from the state Department of Health. The county’s death toll increased to 107.

Florida Department of Health reported 134 more COVID-19 cases in Pinellas on Tuesday, bringing the total to 2,523. Five more residents have died due to the novel coronavirus. The death toll increased to 107.

So far this week, 288 new cases and five deaths have been reported. For the week June 8-14, 659 new cases and seven deaths were reported. DOH reported 162 new cases on June 13, a new one-day high.

In comparison, DOH reported 286 new cases and 13 deaths in the county during the week, June 1-7, including 81 on June 5, the day the state moved into phase two of its recovery plans.

DOH reported 124 new cases and seven deaths from May 25-31, 151 new cases and eight deaths from May 18-24, 159 new cases and seven deaths from May 11-17, and 95 new cases and 19 deaths from May 4-10, which was the first week of phase one of the state’s recovery plan.

The county’s first two cases were reported on March 11, and the first death was confirmed on March 23.

Statewide, the cumulative number of cases increased to 80,109 with 2,993 deaths on Tuesday. Cases in the United States totaled 2,114,180 with 116,130 deaths. Globally, more than 8 million cases have been reported with 437,532 deaths.

COVID-19 cases in Pinellas include 2,471 residents and 52 non-residents. More cases were in females, 58%, to 42% in males. Ages range from 1-102. Median age was 45. Dr. Ulyee Choe, director of DOH Pinellas, said at a meeting on June 11 that the case count was growing in the age range of 25-34.

Choe also said the percent of cases in blacks was increasing. It was 25% on Tuesday with 9% for Hispanics, another demographic where cases were increasing, according to Choe.

DOH reported that 492 have been hospitalized in Pinellas, which includes 475 residents (seven more than Monday) and 17 nonresidents. About 20% people with confirmed cases have been hospitalized since March. This percentage has been decreasing in recent days.

Local hospitals reported 26% available bed capacity on Tuesday with 20% capacity for adult ICU beds.

“Hospitalizations is a count of all laboratory confirmed cases in which an inpatient hospitalization occurred at any time during the course of illness,” DOH said. “These people may no longer be hospitalized. This number does not represent the number of COVID-19 positive persons currently hospitalized. We do not have a figure for that information at this time.”

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Charts on the Florida Department of Health’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard provide data on ages, number of new cases by day and other county-specific details. This one is for Pinellas. Note: the median age on this graphic is in conflict with written information that shows the median age to be 46. The number hospitalized is for residents only.

Testing in Pinellas

DOH reported on June 16 that 72,041 COVID-19 tests had been done in Pinellas, 6,084 more than the day before. DOH says an average of 3.6% of test results were positive, up from 3.4% on Monday, 3.3 on Sunday and 3.2% on Saturday.

According to the detail report released June 15, 154, or 4.5%, of 3,406 tests were positive from June 14. Eighteen tests were inconclusive and results were pending for 60

A summary report for Pinellas shows 5% of tests from June 13 were positive, 3.1% from June 12, 3.8% from June 11, 4.6% from June 10, 3.1% from June 9, 1.6% of tests from June 8, 2.9% of tests from June 7 and 1.6% from June 6. The numbers do not include people that have previously tested positive.

For information on testing, contact your health provider, or call the state DOH’s COVID-19 hotline at 1-866-779-6121 or the Pinellas County DOH’s hotline at 727-824-6900. Both numbers are available 24/7.

Case counts in local municipalities

DOH provided updated and revised information on the city of residence for 2,239 of the cases in Pinellas on Monday. St. Petersburg has the most with 1,149 cases (51%), 345 are Clearwater residents, 259 from Largo, 163 from Seminole, 118 from Pinellas Park, 95 from Palm Harbor, 44 from Tarpon Springs, 37 from Dunedin, 21 from Safety Harbor, 19 from Oldsmar, 17 from Clearwater Beach, 12 from Indian Rocks Beach, nine from Gulfport, eight from South Pasadena, seven from Kenneth City, five from Madeira Beach, three from Belleair, Belleair Beach and Belleair Bluffs, two each from Bay Pines, Lealman, North Redington Beach and St. Pete Beach, and one each from Indian Shores, Crystal Beach, Treasure Island and Tierra Verde.

Case numbers at long-term care facilities

Since March, 582 cases have been reported at these facilities, or 27% of cases in the county.

At least one case has been reported at 73 of the county’s long-term care facilities as of June 14 with 316 cases in residents and 174 in staff at the facilities. The numbers do not reflect current infections.

DOH reported on June 14 that 86 cases had been reported by Gulf Shore Care Center, 76 cases by St. Petersburg Nursing and Rehab, 55 cases had been reported by Freedom Square Seminole Nursing Pavilion, 35 by Carrington Place of St. Pete, 33 by Bon Secours Maria Manor Nursing Care Center in St. Petersburg, 25 by Freedom Square Health Care Center in Seminole, 20 by Grand Villa of St. Petersburg, 19 by Bardmoor Oaks Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in Largo, 15 by North Rehabilitation Center in St. Petersburg , 14 by St. Mark Village nursing home in Palm Harbor, 13 by Marion and Bernard L. Samson Nursing Center in St. Petersburg, 10 by Health and Rehabilitation Centre at Dolphins View in South Pasadena and 10 by Patrick Manor in St. Petersburg. The rest had less than 10 cases.

These numbers are provisional and subject to change.

COVID-19 deaths

DOH reported on June 16 that five more county residents have died, bringing the death toll to 107. No further information was available.

At least 77 of the county’s 107 deaths were residents or staff at one of the county’s long-term care facilities. According to a weekly report from DOH released June 13, 26 deaths were from Freedom Square Seminole Nursing Pavilion, including one staff member; 16 from Gulf Shore Care Center; 11 deaths from St. Mark Village; six from Freedom Square Rehabilitation & Nursing Services; five from Patrick Manor; three from St. Petersburg Nursing and Rehab; three from Health and Rehabilitation Centre at Dolphins View; and two from the Inn at Freedom Square.

In addition, one death each was reported at Bardmoor Oaks Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, Bay Tree Center in Palm Harbor, Palm Garden in Clearwater, Palm Garden of Pinellas, Addington Place of East Lake in Tarpon Springs and Sable Palms Health Care Center in Largo. Note: Palm Garden in Clearwater tells Tampa Bay Newspapers it has no deaths.

District Six Medical Examiner’s office released two death reports on June 15 for two women who got sick at home and then died at a local hospital, including a 79-year-old woman who died June 13 and an 80-year-old woman who died June 12. In the report on the 80-year-old, it was noted that other family members had tested positive for COVID-19 and at least one relative was seriously ill.

DOH reported on June 12 that an 86-year-old woman had died, and on June 11 confirmed that a 65-year-old woman had died. The medical examiner’s office released seven death investigation reports the same day, including a 77-year-old man who died June 7, a 73-year-old man who died June 2, a 90-year-old woman who died June 9 and a 65-year-old woman who died June 10. All four were residents of Gulf Shore Care Center.

Local state of emergency extended

The Pinellas County Commission voted June 5 to extend the local state of emergency through June 19. Commissioners have lifted local restrictions at beaches, swimming pools and playgrounds; however, statewide orders remain in effect, which include social distancing, capacity and sanitation requirements. During a special meeting on June 11, commissioners discussed ways to get the message out to the public about the need to continue to protect themselves and others from COVID-19.

Commissioners urge the public to wear cloth masks when in large groups and in enclosed public spaces. They also ask that people remember to use social distancing, wash their hands and continue good sanitation and hygiene measures.

Commissioners will vote on extending the state of emergency until June 26 during a June 18 virtual meeting.

For more information, visit https://covid19.pinellascounty.org/.

State cases top 80,000 with 2,993 deaths

The number of confirmed cases in Florida residents was up to 78,128 on Tuesday. Another 1,981 cases were reported in non-residents, bringing the state’s total to 80,109— 2,783 more than the number reported on Monday.

The numbers are cumulative going back to March 4. DOH has not provided information on how many people have recovered.

The number of deaths in Florida increased to 2,993, which is 55 more than the number reported the day before.

DOH reports that 12,206 have been hospitalized statewide.

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Charts on the Florida Department of Health’s COVID-19 Data and Surveillance Dashboard provide statewide information on ages, number of new cases by day and other details.

DOH reported on June 16 that 1,461,297 people had been tested statewide. DOH says 5.5% of results have been positive. The state reported that 5.4% had tested positive on June 14 and 15, and 5.3% had tested positive as of June 12. As of June 15, 977 tests were inconclusive and results were pending for 1,184.

Of the 80,109 cases, 2,286 were travel-related, 35,273 had contact with a confirmed case, 2,210 had travel and contact with a confirmed case and 29,866 were under investigation.

Statewide recovery plans

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced during a June 3 press conference that the state was moving into phase 2 of its recovery plan. Bars and pubs were allowed to reopen on June 5 with 50% indoor capacity and no restrictions on outdoor seating except to maintain social distancing. All customers must be seated to be served. The new rules do not apply to nightclubs, which remain closed.

Restaurants were allowed to seat customers at their bars as of June 5 and can continue to operate at 50% capacity.

DeSantis changed the rules to allow gatherings of up to 50 people, instead of 10.

Retail establishments and gyms were allowed to open at full capacity. In-store retail businesses, including gyms and fitness centers, must still adhere to social distancing guidelines keeping 6 feet apart. Sanitation protocols also are a requirement.

Entertainment venues, such as movie theaters, bowling alleys and concert halls, were allowed to reopen at 50% capacity.

In addition, the governor said other personal services could reopen, such as tattoo parlors, tanning, massage and acupuncture, but they must use Florida Department of Health guidance.

Pari-mutuel facilities were allowed to submit reopening plans. The state’s universities have until June 23 to submit reopening plans. The governor announced plans during a June 11 press conference to reopen schools in August.

Persons age 65 and older and those with underlying medical conditions are still urged to avoid crowds and exposure to COVID-19. The governor also urged others to be careful when interacting with those more vulnerable to the novel coronavirus virus.

In the written order, it says that all persons who work in long-term care facilities should be tested for COVID-19 on a routine basis. Visitation by family and friends is still prohibited.

Governor’s response to rising numbers

DeSantis answered questions from the media on June 11 and seemed unconcerned about the increase in cases around the state. He attributed it to more testing both of the general public and in long-term care facilities.

He pointed out that more cases were showing up in the younger demographic and said that most of those cases had “no clinical consequences.” He said hospital capacity was still good.

With asked about possible “spikes” in the numbers, he said Florida had never had a spike when compared it to places such as New York.

He said the people most at risk continue to be those older than 65 with chronic medical conditions.

National cases exceed 2.1 million with 116,130 deaths

According to information from Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering, posted at 11 a.m. Tuesday, cases of the coronavirus reported in the United States were up to 2,114,180 with 116,130 deaths compared to 2,095,043 with 115,732 deaths at 11 a.m. Monday. The number of global cases increased to 8,063,488 with 437,532 deaths compared to 7,945,479 with 434,060 deaths on Monday.

For more information on the coronavirus, visit www.floridahealth.gov/index.html.

Suzette Porter is TBN’s Pinellas County editor. She can be reached at sporter@tbnweekly.com.

Note: All information is subject to change.