TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – As Florida continues to battle a growing caseload of coronavirus cases, Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday asked anyone 65 years old and above or with preexisting conditions to stay home for the next 14 days for their own safety.
“Folks who are 65-plus are the ones that have the best chance to suffer a negative outcome, and that’s disproportionately so when you talk about fatalities.” DeSantis said. “We want to make sure those folks are protected.”
DeSantis said state Surgeon General Scott Rivkees will issue a health advisory about people 65 and older and people with serious “underlying medical conditions” staying in their homes. The serious conditions include such things as chronic lung disease, moderate to severe asthma, serious heart conditions, severe obesity and people in cancer treatment.
“You should assume anyone you come in contact with may be infected. Obviously, the best way to avoid contact is to stay at home as much as possible," DeSantis said.
DeSantis still doesn’t think that a broad shutdown like other states have implemented to control the spread of the coronavirus is appropriate for Florida because there are pockets in the state into Florida that have no cases of COVID-19.
About half the state’s reported COVID-19 cases are in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties. But limited testing so far has yet to find any cases of the virus in a third of Florida’s 67 counties. Another third have reported only a few cases.
“These blunt measures, you wouldn’t want to do these to a community where there is no impact,” DeSantis, saying there are negative consequences of the shelter-at-home orders.
DeSantis did urge companies to have at least 50% of their employees telecommute, if possible, to reduce density at workplaces.