JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Three people in Jacksonville were among 48 new COVID-19 deaths recorded by the state Wednesday, according to the Florida Department of Health.
Florida now has 42,402 cases of COVID-19, an increase of 479 since Tuesday.
Two of the Duval County patients who died were men, ages 70 and 91, each of whom came into contact with a confirmed case, according to the Department of Health. The third was a 70-year-old woman. None of those cases is considered travel-related.
The latest figures came a day after Mayor Lenny Curry announced that Jacksonville would enter the second phase of its recovery from the pandemic beginning next week. All of the executive orders issued by the mayor in response to the outbreak will expire on Monday, though Gov. DeSantis’ edicts will remain in place.
Even as Duval County has been the hardest hit in Northeast Florida, with 32 deaths and just shy of 1,200 cases, its positive test rate (3.4 percent) has remained among the lowest in the state. That’s about half of the statewide average, which currently sits at 7.1 percent.
Despite having roughly one-quarter of Duval’s cases, Clay County has recorded 22 deaths as a result of the respiratory illness. Nearly two-thirds of those have been among either workers or residents of the county’s long-term care facilities.
Like officials in Duval, Clay County’s leaders are making preparations for the next phase of Florida’s reopening. The county has begun reopening some of its facilities, such as libraries and the tax collector’s office, as health officials ramp up access to testing.
View the chart below for a full breakdown of all 11 Northeast Florida counties:
At least 7,595 patients who tested positive for COVID-19 have been hospitalized with the illness at some point.
It’s unclear how many of those patients have gotten better since getting sick. The health department does not provide data on the number of people who have recovered.
Age and preexisting conditions remain the biggest risk factors. Data show that 84 percent of the state’s 1,827 deaths were people ages 65 and older. Meanwhile, residents and staff of long-term care facilities make up 42 percent of the death toll.
Florida has recorded 595,478 tests for coronavirus so far. The vast majority (92.7 percent) of those have been negative. Another 715 were inconclusive and 1,191 more are pending.