COVID-19 cases continue to increase in Pinellas County. Florida Department of Health reported another 162 cases on Saturday, bringing the count to 2,103. The death toll remains at 102.
So far this week, 527 new cases and seven deaths have been reported, which includes 116 on Thursday, which had been the most ever reported in one day. Saturday’s number topped that by 46.
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.
In comparison, 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 73,552 with 2,925 deaths. Cases in the United States totaled 2,053,606 with 114,784 deaths. Globally, nearly 7.7 million cases have been reported with 426,696 deaths.
COVID-19 cases in Pinellas include 2,051 residents and 52 non-residents. More cases were in females, 58%, to 42% in males. Ages range from 1-101. Median age was 47 in the county-specific report, which agrees with the number given by Dr. Ulyee Choe, director of DOH Pinellas, at a meeting on June 11. The largest number of cases was in the age range of 25-34.
Note: the state’s chart still shows the median age at 57.
Choe also said the percent of cases in blacks was increasing. It was 25% on Saturday with 10% for Hispanics, another demographic where cases were increasing, according to Choe.
DOH reported that 468 have been hospitalized in Pinellas, which includes 451 residents and 17 nonresidents. About 23% people with confirmed cases have been hospitalized since March.
Local hospitals reported nearly 30% available bed capacity on Saturday with about 22% 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.”
Testing in Pinellas
DOH reported on June 13 that 64,957 COVID-19 tests had been done in Pinellas, 2,853 more than the day before. DOH says an average of 3.2% of test results were positive, up from 3.1% on Friday. According to the detail report released June 12, 77 of 1,947 tests from June 11 had come back positive, or 3.8%. Seventeen tests were inconclusive and results were pending for 113.
A summary report for Pinellas shows 4.6% of tests done on June 10 were positive, 3.1% from June 9, 1.6% of tests from June 8, 2.9% of tests from June 7, 1.6% from June 6, 3.1% from June 5, 4.5% from June 4 and 2.1% from June 3. 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.
For online information on testing and location of sites, visit https://covid19.pinellascounty.org/testing/.
Case counts in local municipalities
DOH provided updated and revised information on the city of residence for 1,881 of the cases in Pinellas on Friday. St. Petersburg has the most with 887 cases (47%), 284 are Clearwater residents, 211 from Largo, 153 from Seminole, 93 from Pinellas Park, 85 from Palm Harbor, 39 from Tarpon Springs, 28 from Dunedin, 20 from Safety Harbor, 15 from Clearwater Beach, 14 from Oldsmar, 11 from Indian Rocks Beach, seven each from Kenneth City, South Pasadena and Gulfport, four from Madeira Beach, three from Belleair, two each from Bay Pines, Belleair Beach, Belleair Bluffs and Lealman, and one each from Indian Shores, North Redington Beach, Crystal Beach, Treasure Island and Tierra Verde.
Case numbers at long-term care facilities
At least one case has been reported at 58 of the county’s long-term care facilities as of June 9. Since March, 542 cases have been reported at these facilities, or 29% of cases in the county.
DOH reported 270 cases in residents and 166 in staff at the facilities as of June 9, the most recent report available. The numbers do not reflect current infections.
According to that report, 106 cases had been reported by Gulf Shore Care Center, 72 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, 27 by St. Mark Village nursing home in Palm Harbor, 22 by Health and Rehabilitation Centre at Dolphins View in South Pasadena, 23 by Freedom Square Health Care Center in Seminole, 13 Marion and Bernard L. Samson Nursing Center in St. Petersburg and 10 by Patrick Manor in St. Petersburg. The rest had less than 10 cases.
These numbers are provisional and subject to change.
At least 78 of the county’s 102 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 and three from Health and Rehabilitation Centre at Dolphins View; two from the Inn at Freedom Square.
In addition, one death each was reported at Bardmoor Oaks Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in Largo, 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.
DOH reported on June 12 that an 86-year-old woman had died, bringing the death count to 102.
DOH reported on June 11 that a 65-year-old woman had died. District Six 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.
In addition, the medical examiner released reports on a 92-year-old woman who died June 7 from Addington Place of East Lake in Tarpon Springs, a 77-year-old man who died June 7 from Sabal Palms in Largo and a 91-year-old woman who died June 8 from Patrick Manor.
DOH reported on June 10 the death of a 90-year-old woman and four new deaths on June 9, including a 92-year-old woman, a 91-year-old woman and two 77-year-old men.
DOH reported four deaths on June 5. According to the detail report, they included an 85-year-old man, an 87-year-old woman and a 73-year-old man. No information was available for the fourth.
The medical examiner’s office released one death report on June 5 for an 85-year-old man who died June 4 from Health and Rehabilitation Centre at Dolphin View. DOH reported on June 4 the death of an 89-year-old woman.
Local state of emergency extended
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.
For more information, visit https://covid19.pinellascounty.org/.
State cases top 73,500 with 2,925 deaths
The number of confirmed cases in Florida residents was up to 71,589 on Saturday. Another 1,963 cases were reported in non-residents, bringing the state’s total to 73,552— 2,581 more than the number reported on Friday.
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 2,925, which is 48 more than the number reported the day before.
DOH reports that 11,824 have been hospitalized statewide.
DOH reported on June 13 that 1,371,401 people had been tested statewide. DOH says 5.4% of results have been positive, which is an increase from 5.3% on Friday. As of June 12, 996 tests were inconclusive and results were pending for 1,243.
Of the 73,552 cases, 2,263 were travel-related, 33,456 had contact with a confirmed case, 2,166 had travel and contact with a confirmed case and 25,477 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.
Restaurants were allowed to seat customers at their bars starting as of June 5 and can continue to operate at 50% capacity.
DeSantis also 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 can 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, but 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 top 2 million with 114,784 deaths
According to information from Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering, posted at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, cases of the coronavirus reported in the United States were up to 2,053,606 with 114,784 deaths compared to 2,026,073 with 113,883 deaths at 11 a.m. Friday. The number of global cases increased to 7,693,354 with 426,696 deaths compared to 7,550,933 with 422,062 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 email@example.com.
Note: All information is subject to change.