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Pinellas County’s cumulative total of confirmed cases of COVID-19 is up to 21,440, according to the report released Saturday from the state Department of Health. The county’s death toll increased to 721.

Florida Department of Health continues to report an uptick in COVID-19 cases in Pinellas County, adding 81 more on Sept. 19 to bring the count to 21,440. One more resident has died due to the novel coronavirus, upping the death toll to 721.

Since Sept. 14, DOH has reported 518 new COVID-19 cases and 20 deaths.

From Sept. 7-13, 497 cases and 29 deaths were reported. The case count was a decrease compared to the prior week, but an increase from Aug. 24-30. The death count was higher than the week of Aug. 31-Sept. 6.

Statewide, the cumulative number of cases increased to 681,233 with 13,287 deaths. Cases in the United States totaled 6,740,400 with 198,679 deaths. Globally, more than 30.57 million cases have been reported with 952,981 deaths.

COVID-19 cases in Pinellas include 21,292 residents and 148 non-residents. More cases were in females, 11,509 (54%), to 9,781 in males. Gender was unknown in two. Ages range from 0-105. Median age was 43. Nineteen percent were Black, and 12% were Hispanic.

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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. The number hospitalized is for residents only.

About 10% of all cases in the county have been hospitalized since March. DOH reported that 2,212 residents and 23 non-residents had been hospitalized in Pinellas.

Local hospitals had 27% capacity in staffed adult beds (831 of 3,105) on Saturday with 17% capacity (46 of 274) in ICU beds. All 11 hospitals had at least one ICU bed available except Northside. According to the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration, as of 10:30 a.m. Sept. 18, 105 beds were occupied by a COVID-19 patient with 24 in ICU and 13 on a ventilator.

Case counts begin trending downward

From Aug. 31-Sept. 6, 537 cases and 22 deaths were reported. It was the first time the weekly case count increased since Aug. 24-30. The increase may be due in part to the Aug. 31 data dump by Quest Diagnostics of almost 75,000 test results dating back to April. The state severed all ties with Quest because it failed to follow the state’s law and report results of COVID-19 tests in a timely manner.

From Aug. 24-30, 457 cases and 59 deaths were reported. It was the sixth consecutive week DOH reported fewer cases compared to the week before. Eight more deaths occurred; however, Aug. 30 was the first date that no deaths were reported in the county since Aug. 10.

From Aug. 17-23, 669 cases were reported and 51 deaths. It was the fifth consecutive week that fewer cases were reported than the week before; however, three more deaths occurred than last week.

From Aug. 10-16, 815 COVID-19 cases and 48 deaths were reported. It was the fourth consecutive week that the case count decreased and the first time since June 8-14 that less than 1,000 cases had been reported in one week. In addition, it was the second week that fewer deaths were reported compared to the week before.

From Aug. 3-9, 1,069 new cases were reported and 61 deaths. It was the third consecutive week that the case count decreased and the lowest weekly case count since June 15-21.

From July 27-Aug. 2, 1,627 new cases and 66 deaths were reported. It was the second consecutive week that the number of daily cases reported had gone down. From July 20-26, 1,675 new cases were reported and 59 deaths, which had been the lowest weekly case count since June 22-28.

Case counts surged as Florida initiated recovery plan

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

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

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Pinellas County’s website shows a graph of COVID-19 cases reported since March.

From June 8-14, 659 new cases and seven deaths were reported. DOH reported 162 new cases on June 13, which at the time had been the one-day high.

From June 15-21, 1,332 new cases and 13 deaths were reported in Pinellas. June 20 was the third consecutive day of record case counts that week with 285. June 19 was a record day with 266 cases, as was June 18 with 203 new cases.

For the week of June 22-28, 2,353 new cases and 40 deaths were reported. Three record-high days occurred with 614 new cases on June 27, 430 on June 26 and 354 on June 23.

Pinellas County enacted a mandatory face mask order for indoor places on June 24 and the state closed bars not licensed to sell food on June 26. The goal was to help control community spread of the virus.

From June 29-July 5, DOH reported 2,513 new cases and 43 deaths, and 2,353 new cases. From July 6-12, 2,312 cases were reported and 33 deaths. From July 13-19, 2,638 cases were reported and 85 deaths — the most new cases and deaths in any seven-day period so far. Pinellas set a new second highest one-day case count on July 13, adding 598. July 9 with 431 new cases and July 10 with 467 had been the previous second highest one-day count records.

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

Testing in Pinellas

According to testing information on the county specific report, 2.48% of 3,606 test results on Sept. 18 were positive, 2.78% of 4,087 results on Sept. 17, 2.98% of 3,673 results on Sept. 16, 2.48% of 2,946 on Sept. 15, 3.19% of 3,277 results on Sept. 14, 3.60% of 2,038 on Sept. 13, 2.27% of 2,500 on Sept. 12, 2.45% of 3,418 on Sept. 11, 4.97% of 2,866 on Sept. 10, 3.71% of 1,996 on Sept. 9, 3.89% of 1,631 on Sept. 8, 2.70% of 1,875 on Sept. 7, 3.09% of 1,785 on Sept. 6, 3.12% of 2,456 on Sept. 5, 3.53% of 2,760 on Sept. 4, 2.5% of 3,472 on Sept. 3, 3.81% of 2,673 on Sept. 2 and 2.30% of 2,384 on Sept. 1.

DOH reported that 211,926 tests have been done in Pinellas since March, and as of Sept. 18, the average rate of positive results was 10.05%, compared to 10.07% on Sept. 17-16, 10.08% on Sept. 15, 10.10% on Sept. 14, 10.11% on Sept. 13-12, 10.12% on Sept. 11, 10.14% on Sept. 10, 10.12% on Sept. 9-7, 10.13% on Sept. 6-5, and 10.14% on Sept. 4-1. Results were pending for nine and 135 tests were inconclusive.

The percent is the number of people who test positive the first time divided by all people tested that day, excluding people who have previously tested positive.

As of Sept. 18, 1,454, or 10.4%, of 13,997 tests of those younger than 18 in Pinellas were positive. Statewide, 55,765, or 13.8% of 403,649 tests were 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. For online information, visit https://covid19.pinellascounty.org/testing/.

Cases in Pinellas County schools

The Pinellas County School District reported on Sept. 18 that as of Sept. 17, five more students and two employees had tested positive for COVID-19.

Two students attended Westgate Elementary School in St. Petersburg. Two partial classrooms were affected. One student attended Lakewood High School in St. Petersburg. Three classrooms, three partial classrooms and 1 partial bus were impacted.

One student attended Madeira Beach Fundamental, and two partial classrooms were affected. One student attended Northwest Elementary School in St. Petersburg. One classroom was impacted.

One employee worked at Calvin Hunsinger School in Clearwater and a small group of students were affected. The second employee worked at Pinellas Park High School and there was no impact to classrooms or buses.

The district reported on Sept. 17 that as of Sept. 16 six more students and one employee had tested positive for COVID-19.

Three students attended Eisenhower Elementary School in Clearwater. No impact to buses or classrooms. One student attended Bay Point Middle School in St. Petersburg. Six partial classrooms were affected.

One student attended Osceola Middle School in Seminole. The district reported no impact to buses or classrooms. One student attended Tarpon Springs High School. One classroom, four partial classrooms and one partial bus was impacted.

The employee works at Pinellas Park High School. A small group of students was affected.

The district reported on Sept. 16 that as of Sept. 15 five more students had tested positive for COVID-19.

One student attended Carwise Middle School in Palm Harbor and three partial classrooms were affected. One student attended James B. Sanderlin PK-8 in St. Petersburg and one classroom and two partial classrooms were impacted.

One student attended Boca Ciega High School and four partial classrooms were affected. One student attended East Lake High School and five partial classrooms were impacted. One student attended Seminole Middle School, and one classroom and one partial classroom were impacted.

The district reported on Sept. 15 that as of Sept. 14, two students and two employees had tested positive for COVID-19, affecting 21 classrooms.

One student tested positive at Palm Harbor Middle School effecting seven partial classrooms and one student tested positive at St. Petersburg Collegiate South. No classrooms were impacted.

One employee at Countryside High School tested positive affecting seven partial classrooms and one employee at Palm Harbor University High School affecting seven classrooms.

For more information, visit https://www.pcsb.org/COVID19Cases.

Case counts in local municipalities

DOH provided updated and revised information on the city of residence for cases in Pinellas on Saturday. St. Petersburg has the most with 8,684 cases, 4,237 are Clearwater residents, 2,241 from Largo, 1,217 from Palm Harbor, 1,078 from Pinellas Park, 1,030 from Seminole, 650 from Tarpon Springs, 531 from Dunedin, 383 from Oldsmar, 289 from Safety Harbor, 146 from Clearwater Beach, 139 from Gulfport, 128 from Kenneth City, 109 from South Pasadena, 68 from Indian Rocks Beach, 37 from Belleair, 33 from Madeira Beach, 25 from Belleair Beach, 22 from Crystal Beach, 16 from Tierra Verde, 16 from St. Pete Beach, 14 from Bay Pines, 13 from North Redington Beach, 11 from Treasure Island, four from Belleair Bluffs, Redington Shores and Ozona, three from Indian Shores and Lealman, two from Redington Beach, one listed as homeless and 152 as missing.

Case numbers at long-term care facilities

Since March, 3,813 cases have been reported at long-term care facilities, or 18% of cases in the county. Carrington Place (64 beds) and Countryside Rehab and Health Care Center (120 beds) are designated COVID-19 isolation Centers.

At least one case has been reported at 95 of the county’s long-term care facilities as of Sept. 15 with 955 cases in residents and 371 in staff at the facilities. The numbers do not reflect current infections.

The state’s emergency rules requiring biweekly testing at staff at nursing homes and assisted living facilities expired Sept. 13. Nursing homes must continue staff testing under federal rules.

As of Sept. 15, 91 cases were reported by Lexington Health and Rehabilitation Center in St. Petersburg, 91 by Carrington Place of St. Pete, 90 cases by Countryside Rehab and Healthcare Center in Palm Harbor, 74 by Abbey Rehabilitation and Nursing Center, 69 by Jacaranda Manor in St. Petersburg, 65 by Boca Ciega Center in Gulfport, 62 by Freedom Square Seminole Nursing Pavilion, 50 by The Fountains at Boca Ciega Bay, 48 by Bay Pointe Nursing Pavilion in St. Petersburg, 43 by Gateway Care Center in Pinellas Park, 40 by Oak Manor Healthcare & Rehabilitation Center. The rest had fewer than 40.

COVID-19 deaths at long-term care facilities

At least 504 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 9% of deaths at these facilities. Dade County is No. 1 with 775 deaths, or 14%, and Palm Beach County is No. 2 with 554 deaths, or 10%.

According to a weekly report from DOH released Sept 14, 28 deaths were reported by Freedom Square Seminole Nursing Pavilion, including one staff member; 25 by Countryside Rehab and Healthcare; 25 by Bon Secours Maria Manor Nursing Care Center; 25 by Jacaranda Manor, including two under investigation; 23 by Gulf Shore Care Center; 18 by Oak Manor Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center; 18 by Peninsula Care and Rehabilitation Center, including two under investigation; 17 by Apollo Health and Rehabilitation Center; 13 by Boca Ciega Center; 11 deaths by St. Mark Village; and 10 by Lexington Health and Rehabilitation Center, including one under investigation.

Nine deaths were reported by Walton Place, Inn at the Fountains in St. Petersburg, The Oaks of Clearwater and Freedom Square Rehabilitation & Nursing.

Eight were reported by Carrington Place of St. Pete, Gulfport Rehabilitation Center, West Bay of Tampa and The Care Center at Pinellas Park, including one staff member.

Seven were reported by Tierra Pines Nursing Home in Largo, Grand Villa of Largo, Kensington Gardens Rehab and Nursing Center, Health and Rehabilitation Centre at Dolphins View, Bardmoor Oaks Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, Bay Pointe Nursing Pavilion in St. Petersburg and Arbor Oaks of Tyrone.

Six were reported by Abbey Rehabilitation and Nursing Center, Consulate Health Care of St. Petersburg, Regal Palms, Consulate Health Care of Safety Harbor Patrick Manor, Stratford Court of Palm Harbor and St. Petersburg Nursing and Rehabilitation. Five were reported by Palm Garden of Largo and Highland Pines Rehabilitation Center.

Four deaths were reported by Alpine Health and Rehabilitation, Baytree Lakeside in Kenneth City, Angel Care Assisted Living Facility in St. Petersburg, Eagle Lake Nursing and Rehab Center, Gateway Care Center of Pinellas, North Rehabilitation Center, Seasons Belleair Memory Care in Clearwater and Grand Villa of St. Petersburg, including one staff member.

Three were reported by Palm Garden of Pinellas, Seasons Largo, Grand Villa of Pinellas Park, Masonic Home of Florida in St. Petersburg, Marion and Bernard L. Samson Center, Evergreen Manor Retirement Home in Safety Harbor, Country Inn, Egret Cove Center in St. Petersburg, Belleair Health Center and Lakeside Oaks Care Center, including one under investigation.

Two deaths were reported by Cross Terrace Rehabilitation Center, Alhambra Health and Rehabilitation Center in St. Petersburg, Brentwood Senior Living at St. Pete, Bay Tree Center in Palm Harbor, Palm Garden of Clearwater, The Inn at Freedom Square, The Inn at Lake Seminole Square, Royal Oaks Manor, Shore Acres Care Center in St. Petersburg, Sunset Point, Sabal Palms Health Care Center in Largo, South Heritage Health & Rehabilitation Center, PARC of St. Petersburg and Westminster Suncoast.

One death was reported by Oak Manor Senior Living Community, Westminster Palms in St. Petersburg, Wrights Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in Seminole, The Vineyard Inn in Largo, Union House in Clearwater, Sylvan Health Center in Clearwater, Sylvan Terrace in Pinellas Park, Seabreeze Siesta Manor in Clearwater, Pinellas Point Nursing and Rehab Center in St. Petersburg, Harborchase of Palm Harbor, Grand Villa of Clearwater, Grand Villa of Dunedin, Golfview Healthcare Center in St. Petersburg, Heron House of Largo, Heather Haven in Dunedin, Heather Haven II in Dunedin, Magnolia Gardens Assisted Living in Pinellas Park, The Barrington, Addington Place of East Lake, Clearwater Center, Bristol Court Assisted Living Community in St. Petersburg and East Bay Rehabilitation Center in Clearwater.

Note: The Vineyard Inn tells Tampa Bay Newspapers it has no deaths; however, DOH has reported one at that facility since Aug. 8.

COVID-19 deaths countywide

DOH reported the death of an 84-year-old man due to COVID-19 on Sept. 19. The death toll rose to 721.

Pinellas is tied with St. Lucie County for the fifth highest death rate in the state at 3.4%. Charlotte County has the highest at 4.5%. Highlands County is No. 2 with a rate of 3.9%. Hernando is at No. 3 with a death rate of 3.8%. Indian River County is No. 4 with a rate of 3.6%.

In Pinellas, one death has been reported in the 15-24 age group, three deaths in the 25-34 age group, five in the 35-44 group (1%), 19 in 45-54 (3%), 59 in 55-64 (8%), 141 in 65-74 (20%), 221 in 75-84 (31%) and 272 (38%) in ages 85 and up.

DOH reported five COVID-19 related deaths on Sept. 18, including three women age 89 and one age 60 plus one man age 69. DOH reported the death of a 77-year-old man on Sept. 17. DOH reported four deaths on Sept. 16, including three women ages 105, 79 and 72, and one man age 64.

DOH reported nine deaths in Pinellas on Sept. 15, including three women ages 96, 85 and 77, and six men ages 91, 80, 79, 76, 67 and 61. No new deaths were reported on Sept. 13 or 14.

DOH reported three deaths on Sept. 12, including a 74-year-old woman and two men, ages 74 and 66. DOH reported the death of an 85-year-old woman on Sept. 11 and four deaths were reported on Sept. 10, including two women ages 97 and 92, and two men ages 83 and 80.

DOH reported 15 deaths on Sept. 9, including nine women and five men. Among the dead were two women age 91 and seven others ages 94, 90, 88, 83, 80, 73 and 67. Two 84-year-old and two 64-year-old men were on the list plus two more ages 74 and 55.

DOH reported five COVID-19 related deaths on Sept. 8. The dead included an 87-year-old woman and four men, ages 94, 93, 76 and 67. DOH reported one COVID-19 related death on Sept. 7, a 73-year-old man. DOH reported the death of a 97-year-old woman on Sept. 6.

DOH reported on Sept. 5 that a 94-year-old woman and 88-year-old man had died due to COVID-19. No new deaths were reported on Sept. 4. DOH reported four deaths on Sept. 3, including two women ages 101 and 79, and two men ages 93 and 81.

DOH reported the deaths of two women age 93 and 83 on Sept. 2. DOH reported five deaths on Sept. 1, including two women ages 93 and 85, and three men ages 99, 86 and 82.

Local state of emergency, face mask order

The Pinellas County Commission voted unanimously Sept. 17 to extend the local state of emergency through Friday, Sept. 25.

The countywide ordinance requiring that face masks be worn in indoor public places when social distancing is not possible remains in effect. The face mask ordinance says that retail employees must wear face coverings unless in an area that is not open to the public with social distancing measures in place.

Restaurants and staff at bars can only serve people who are seated. Social distancing of 6 feet must be maintained. Staff also must wear face masks when preparing or serving food or beverages indoors and outdoors. Customers do not have to wear masks while eating or drinking. No congregating at the bars or any area is allowed.

During the public comment period, about 80 residents spoke for and against continuing the face mask order. Commissioners still say it is not yet time to make any changes. They plan to discuss the matter again on Sept. 22. They ask that people practice tolerance and reminded everyone that some people cannot wear a face mask and are exempt from the rule.

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

Statewide cases top 680,000 with 13,287 deaths

The number of confirmed cases in Florida residents was up to 673,194 on Saturday. Another 8,039 cases were reported in non-residents, bringing the total to 681,233 — 3,573 more than the day before.

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

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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.

The number of deaths in Florida increased to 13,287 deaths, which is 62 more than the number reported on Friday. DOH also reported that 163 non-Florida residents have died.

DOH reports that 42,374 residents have been hospitalized statewide, which is 140 more than the number reported on Friday. No information was available about non-residents.

Testing statewide

Looking at daily results, 4.54% of 75,915 test results on Sept. 18 were positive, 4.18% of 74,174 results on Sept. 17, 4.46% of 70,940 on Sept. 16, 4.47% of 50,010 on Sept. 15, 4.22% of 61,228 on Sept. 14, 3.91% of 44,959 on Sept. 13, 4.26% of 54,602 on Sept. 12, 4.44% of 69,417 on Sept. 11, 5.53% of 63,740 on Sept. 10, 5.54% of 44,077 on Sept. 9, 5.94% of 37,231 results on Sept. 8, 4.96% of 35,080 results on Sept. 7, 4.55% of 39,589 on Sept. 6, 5.06% of 49,288 on Sept. 5, 5.99% of 59,181 results on Sept. 4, 5.10% of 60,642 from Sept. 3, 6.23% of 54,875 from Sept. 2 and 5.63% of 43,196 results from Sept. 1.

DOH reported results 5,075,633 cumulative tests done statewide with 13.42% coming back as positive as of Sept. 18, compared to 13.43% on Sept. 17, 13.44% on Sept. 16, 13.45% on Sept. 15, 13.44% on Sept. 14, 13.45% on Sept. 13, 13.47% on Sept. 12, 13.48% on Sept. 11-6, 13.5% on Sept. 5, 13.7% on Sept. 4, 13.49% on Sept. 3 and 13.48% on Sept. 2-1. Results were inconclusive for 7,029. The number pending was unavailable.

National cases exceed 6.7 million with 198,679 deaths

According to information from Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering, posted at 1 p.m. Saturday, cases of the coronavirus reported in the United States were up to 6,740,400 with 198,679 deaths compared to 6,681,251 with 197,763 at 12:30 p.m. Friday. The number of global cases increased to 30,579,108 with 952,981 deaths compared 30,241,377 with 947,266 deaths on Friday.

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.