Florida Department of Health reported 725 new cases of COVID-19 in Pinellas County as of Jan. 6, bringing the total to 48,998. Eight more residents have died due to the novel coronavirus, upping the death toll to 1,114.

For the week of Dec. 28-Jan. 3, DOH reported 3,997 new cases and 80 deaths considerably higher than the 2,223 cases and 30 deaths reported for the week of Dec. 21-27.

From Dec. 14-20, 2,807 new cases were reported and 46 deaths. From Dec. 7-13, 2,854 new cases and 26 deaths were reported. From Nov. 30-Dec. 6, 1,841 cases of COVID-19 were reported and 23 deaths. From Nov. 23-29, 1,930 cases and 32 deaths were reported.

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 1,429,722 with 25,684 deaths as of Jan. 6. According to Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems for Science and Engineering, as of 3:30 p.m. Jan. 7, In the United States, cases totaled 21,416,016 with 362,983 deaths. Globally, more than 87.65 million cases have been reported with almost 1.9 million deaths.

COVID-19 cases in Pinellas included 47,862 residents and 1,136 non-residents. More cases were in females, 25,654 (54%), to 22,113 in males. Gender was unknown in 95. Ages range from 0-105. Median age was 44. Thirteen percent were Black, (down from 13%) and 11% were Hispanic.

About 7% of all cases in the county have been hospitalized since March. DOH reported that 3,429 residents and 38 non-residents had been hospitalized in Pinellas.

Local hospitals had 21% capacity in staffed adult beds (663 of 3,198) on Thursday with 13% capacity (43 of 336) in ICU beds. All hospitals had at least one ICU bed available except St. Petersburg General and Largo Medical. According to the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration, as of 10:35 a.m. Jan. 7, 387 beds were occupied by a COVID-19 patient with 91 in ICU and 34 on a ventilator.

Testing in Pinellas

DOH reported that 10.79% of 6,110 test results on Jan. 6 were positive, 11.64% of results on Jan. 5, 12.04% on Jan. 4, 11.09% of 2,718 on Jan. 3, 12.09% of 4,015 on Jan. 2, 10.10% of 3,704 on Jan. 1, 10.60% of 7,449 on Dec. 31, 12.07% of 5,224 on Dec. 30, 8.45% of 4,115 on Dec. 29, 14.02% of 2,287 on Dec. 28, 12.57% of 1,899 on Dec. 27, 6.66% of 3,125 test results on Dec. 26 were positive, 5.95% of 4,051 results on Dec. 25, 8.20% of 5,889 on Dec. 24, 6.38% of 7,391 on Dec. 23, 8.32% of 4,111 on Dec. 22, 7.92% of 3,536 on Dec. 21, 7.28% of 5,271 on Dec. 20, 6.38% of 3,741 on Dec. 19, 7.27% of 5,626 on Dec. 18, 7.74% of 6,111 results on Dec. 17, 6.42% of 7,610 on Dec. 16, 7.51% of 3,720 on Dec. 15, 8.80% of 3,575 on Dec. 14, 7.28% of 4,382 test results on Dec. 13, 6.57% of 4,907 results on Dec. 12, 6.26% of 6,294 results on Dec. 11, 7.38% of 6,511 on Dec. 10, 6.91% of 7,260 on Dec. 9, 8.46% of 2,738 on Dec. 8, 8.35% of 2,723 on Dec. 7 and 7.05% of 3,864 on Dec. 6.

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. For online information, visit https://covid19.pinellascounty.org/testing/.

Case counts in local municipalities, etc.

DOH provided updated and revised information on the city of residence for cases in Pinellas on Thursday, Jan. 7. St. Petersburg has the most with 17,899 cases, 9,393 are Clearwater residents, 5,204 from Largo, 3,234 from Palm Harbor, 2,604 from Seminole, 2,364 from Pinellas Park, 1,739 from Tarpon Springs, 1,496 from Dunedin, 909 from Oldsmar, 723 from Safety Harbor, 400 from Clearwater Beach, 362 from Gulfport, 223 from South Pasadena 215 from Kenneth City, 203 from Indian Rocks Beach, 177 from Belleair, 127 from Madeira Beach, 75 from Belleair Beach, 70 from Tierra Verde, 62 from Crystal Beach, 54 from St. Pete Beach, 43 from North Redington Beach, 42 from Treasure Island, 27 from Bay Pines, 17 from Lealman, nine from Belleair Bluffs, nine from Redington Shores, seven from Ozona, seven from Redington Beach, four from Indian Shores, and one listed as homeless and 110 as missing.

Since March, 5,450 cases have been reported at long-term care facilities, or 11% of cases in the county.

For current case counts in Pinellas County schools, visit https://www.pcsb.org/COVID19Cases.

COVID-19 deaths in Pinellas

DOH reported eight more deaths on Jan. 6, upping the death toll to 1,114.

DOH reported 80 new deaths from Dec. 28-Jan. 3. Only 30 new deaths were reported from Dec. 21-27.

To date, one death has been reported in the 15-24 age group, four deaths in the 25-34 age group, 11 in the 35-44 group (1%), 29 in 45-54 (3%), 89 in 55-64 (8%), 217 in 65-74 (19%), 339 in 75-84 (30%) and 424 (38%) in ages 85 and up.

At least 715 of the county’s deaths were residents or staff at one of the county’s long-term care facilities. Pinellas is No. 3 in the state with reporting 8% of deaths at these facilities. Dade County is No. 1 with 911 deaths, or 11%, and Palm Beach County is No. 2 with 842 deaths, or 10%.

Local state of emergency, face mask order

Pinellas County Administrator Barry Burton has extended the local state of emergency through Jan. 15, and as long as the case count continues to rise, it will probably continue to be extended.

Dr. Ulyee Choe, director of Florida Department of Health in Pinellas County, reported Jan. 5 that the number was continuing the increase with the seven-day average of new cases up to 562 and an all-time high of 878 cases reported on New Year’s Eve. The positivity rate was up to 11%.

Hospital capacity was starting to show some impact with an increase in the use of beds for COVID patients, as well as ICU beds and COVID-19 patients on ventilators. He said hospital administrators are worried that if the trends continue there could be problems. He said preventative measures are needed, such as social distancing and wearing facial coverings.

The countywide ordinance requiring that facial coverings be worn in indoor places remains in effect. Bars and restaurants can only serve seated patrons.

Customers at bars and restaurants must be seated to be served, and employees must wear masks.

For more information on the county’s response to the coronavirus, visit https://covid19.pinellascounty.org/.

Statewide cases top 1.4 million with 22,817 deaths

DOH reported another 1,401,374 positive cases in Florida residents on Jan. 6 with 25,358 in non-residents to bring the total to 1,429,722.

From Dec. 28-Jan. 3, the number of confirmed cases in Florida residents increased to 1,352,222 with the tally for all cases at 1,376,692 — 104,713 more than last week. DOH reported 1,271,979 cases from Dec. 21-27, only 59,398 more than the week before.

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 residents increased to 22,481. DOH also reported that 336 non-residents have died, bringing the state’s death toll to 22,817.

DOH reports that 64,704 residents have been hospitalized statewide as of Jan. 6. No information was available about non-residents.

Testing statewide

DOH reported that 11.60% of 148,450 test results on Jan. 6 were positive, 12.60% of 120,303 on Jan. 5, 12.79% of 103,363 on Jan. 4, 12.52% of 78,339 on Jan. 3, 12.43% of 73,235 on Jan. 2, 10.13% of 86,429 on Jan. 1, 11.15% of 167,196 on Dec. 31, 11.62% of 126,357 on Dec. 30, 8.80% of 139,465 on Dec. 29, 23.06% of 39,654 on Dec. 28, 11.22% of 63,566 on Dec. 27, 9.69% of 65,939 test results on Dec. 26 were positive, 8.01% of 68,436 results on Dec. 25, 7.89% of 124,648 on Dec. 24, 7.88% of 150,411 on Dec. 23, 8.68% of 116,426 on Dec. 22, 8.78% of 106,737 on Dec. 21, 8.45% of 116,373 results on Dec. 20, 7.91% of 94,963 on Dec. 19, 8.35% of 125,686 on Dec. 18, 8.75% of 135,453 on Dec. 17, 8.71% of 135,375 on Dec. 16, 9.28% of 110,843 on Dec. 15, 9.64% of 88,315 on Dec. 14, 8.34% of 91,602 on Dec. 13, 7.89% of 103,473 on Dec. 12, 7.91% of 121.759 on Dec. 11, 7.89% of 132,832 on Dec. 10, 8.12% of 127,533 on Dec. 9, 8.66% of 99,250 on Dec. 8 and 7.92% of 91,211 on Dec. 7.

Vaccination summary

As of Jan. 6, 384,223 had received a first-dose of the COVID-19 vaccination and 14,601 had completed the two-shot series. The state began administering the vaccine on Dec. 14. In Pinellas, 19,177 have the first dose of the vaccine and 1,194 have completed the two-shot series.

Statewide, the age group receiving the most vaccinations was 65-74 with 84,195 receiving the first dose and 1,159 completing the two-dose series. Next were ages 55-64 with 61,639 receiving the first dose and 2,964 getting both doses, followed by 45-54 with 56,869 receiving the first dose and 3,138 have completed the series.

Those ages 75-84 have received 42,944 first doses with 302 receiving a second dose and those ages 85 and older have received 21,065 first doses with only 302 completing the series.

For the younger age groups, those 16-24 have received 9,532 first doses and 256 have completed the series, and of those ages 25-34, 42,233 had received the first dose and 3,162 have finished the series.

For more information on vaccinations in Pinellas County, visit https://covid19.pinellascounty.org/vaccines.

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 numbers are provisional and subject to change.

Revised to correct the state's death count.