15th death in Clay County as Florida surpasses 33,000 coronavirus cases

1,218 deaths reported statewide among 33,193 positive COVID-19 cases

FILE - In this April 16, 2020, file photo, vials containing nasal swabs collected at a COVID-19 drive-through testing site are dropped into a plastic bag to be sent off for processing after being collected in St. Louis. An Associated Press review of more than 20 states found that before the coronavirus outbreak many had at least a modest supply of N95 masks, gowns, gloves and other medical equipment. But those supplies often were well past their expiration dates, left over from the H1N1 influenza outbreak a decade ago. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File) (Jeff Roberson, Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Another patient with coronavirus in Clay County has died, bringing the county’s total to 15 COVID-19 related deaths, according to data released Wednesday morning by the Florida Department of Health.

The latest death was a 54-year-old man who had not traveled but had contact with a confirmed case. His case was first counted on April 9.

Clay County and Duval County have been the hardest hit areas in Northeast Florida when it comes to coronavirus deaths. Duval County recorded its 20th death on Tuesday and now has 1,007 cases countywide.

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Clay County has 272 total cases.

Across Northeast Florida, a total of 2,167 cases and 51 deaths have been confirmed. Alachua County (262) and St. Johns County (207) have both surpassed 200 cases.

As of Wednesday, 33,193 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Florida including 5,419 people who have been hospitalized. Total cases increased by less than 350 from Tuesday’s state numbers. It remains unclear how many people have gotten better since the state does not provide recovery data.

County-by-county coronavirus cases

Over 375,000 tests have been administered across Florida since early March, according to the health department. The vast majority (90.6%) of results have come back negative.

The new data comes as Gov. Ron DeSantis prepares to roll out the next steps for Florida’s economic recovery. DeSantis, who met with President Donald Trump at the White House on Tuesday, is expected to announce plans on Wednesday to reopen the state based on recommendations from business and government leaders.

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In Northeast Florida, that process has already begun. On Tuesday, Mayor Lenny Curry announced that on Monday he will expand beach hours from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. for exercise and outdoor activities. He also said he will lift an executive order that banned hotels from accepting reservations from non-essential lodgers.

The mayor did not go into detail about the timeline for various businesses to reopen. He said his office has been in touch with the governor’s office, and his goal is to release more concrete details by the end of the week. Some businesses, he noted, may take longer to reopen than others.

“It’s my goal to have some back next week," Curry said.

RELATED: Mayor Curry takes initial steps to reopen Jacksonville

The mayor also signed a financial relief bill that will, among other things, provide one-time, $1,000 payments to Jacksonville households hit hardest financially by the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

About the Author:

A Jacksonville native and proud University of North Florida alum, Francine Frazier has been with News4Jax since 2014 after spending nine years at The Florida Times-Union.