The state of Florida is seeing a spike in new coronavirus cases, with record numbers of new cases three days in a row. The surge comes nearly two months after Governor Ron DeSantis took a victory lap, suggesting the worst of the state’s coronavirus outbreaks were behind it.
The Tampa Bay Times reports: “On Thursday, the state recorded 1,698 new cases. On Friday, it was 1,902 cases. That means Florida has added more than 6,100 cases since Thursday. The state also crossed another grim milestone Saturday — exceeding 3,000 deaths since the start of the pandemic. With 49 more fatalities, the number of deaths is now 3,016.”
The Miami Herald adds: “A Miami Herald analysis of public and non-public COVID-19 data found that as of June 3, new cases in the state had consistently been trending up since mid-May and the trends could not be attributed solely to increases in testing, which had been inconsistent and sometimes declining during that period. And as bars, gyms, vacation rentals and movie theaters reopened at partial capacity last week in all but three South Florida counties, the number and rate of new COVID-19 cases were rising statewide — a troubling indicator that the disease could be spreading more quickly.“
The Miami Herald released a thorough study of COVID-19’s history in the state this week.
DeSantis was asked about the recent increases on Friday, and brushed them off.
Said DeSantis: “What you are seeing is . . . well I think the No. 1 outbreak we’ve seen is in the agriculture communities. There was just a big case dump in north central Florida where there’s a watermelon farm. These are workers that are working close together. Once one gets it, it tends to spread very rapidly.”
“The good thing about that is these are people in low risk groups so you have almost none of them end up hospitalized,” added DeSantis. “Those 25- to 45-year-olds, the clinical consequences of them testing positive is usually very, very modest because they’re not in the high-risk groups.”