Florida has been averaging nearly 10,000 new cases per day for the last week. On 12 July, the state broke the national record by reporting 15,300 cases in a single day. A Reuters analysis on 12 July found if Florida were a country, it would be fourth in the world for most new cases in a day.
As of 14 July, over 4,400 Floridians have died due to the virus and the state’s weekly average has risen to 81 people each day by local counts. The same day saw the state’s all-time highest daily death toll, with 132 reported deaths.
Florida saw the biggest daily jump in hospital admissions on 9 July, with more than 400 patients needing treatment, as well as 120 residents, including an 11-year-old girl, dying due to the virus.
“There’s a lot of misinformation all over the web about the seriousness of this outbreak,”Says Dr. Aileen Marty, a Florida International University infectious disease expert who has been working with state officials on the pandemic response.
She says this is partly why Florida is now among the worst-hit regions.
In May and June, Governor Ron DeSantis had said reopening was feasible as cases had declined. He promised no roll-backs.
Younger Americans have been blamed for surges across the country, and particularly in Florida, where most new cases are from those under age 30 on the heels of summertime weather and national holidays.
The median age of infections in Miami-Dade County, the state’s most populous region, is 40. In Tallahassee, the median recently hit a low of 25 years old.
But just because younger people are less likely to die than the elderly from this disease does not make this surge less worrying. Health experts warn there are still serious risks and far too many unknowns about what contracting Covid-19 means in the long-term.
Recent studies have found that some asymptomatic survivors lost some of their sense of smell, even if they did not notice a change. In scans, individuals who otherwise feel fine show signs of lung damage.
“There is a risk to [young people] now, which is small, and a risk for their future, which is unknown,” Dr Marty says.
Source: BBC News