JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Florida and Duval County yet again saw single-day records for new coronavirus cases, according to numbers released Saturday by the state Department of Health.
A total of 9,585 additional cases were reported Saturday morning, bringing the statewide total to 132,545. The previous single-day record -- 8,942 cases -- was recorded Friday.
Saturday’s report continues a trend of record-breaking days that began on June 11, days after most of Florida officially entered phase two of reopening. The Florida data released Saturday marked the 10th day in a row with an increase near or exceeding 3,000 cases.
The numbers reported Saturday also showed a single-day record increase of new COVID-19 cases in Duval County for the fourth day in a row.
Duval County reported 677 additional cases since Friday, bringing the county’s caseload to 4,848.
On Saturday, confirmed cases in Alachua County surpassed 1,000. The county recorded 88 new cases since Friday, bringing its caseload to 1,033.
It’s important to note that all of the positive tests reported Saturday by the state were not necessarily taken on the same day.
The percent of positive results ranged from 4.39% to 15.84% over the past 2 weeks and was 12.82% on Friday, the Florida Department of Health reported. According to the state, this percent is the number of people who test positive for the first time divided by all the people tested that day, excluding people who have previously tested positive.
The latest report shows 78,345 people were tested Friday. According to the state, this count includes the number of people for whom the department received laboratory results by day. People tested on multiple days will be included for each day a new result was received. A person is only counted once for each day they are tested, regardless of whether multiple specimens are tested or multiple results are received.
The demand for testing remains high, with long lines again Friday and Saturday at Lot J, the state’s regional testing site that can test up to 750 people each day. According to the Florida Association of Public Information Officers, more than 700 cars lined up Saturday morning at the Lot J. In the afternoon, the association said the wait time was five hours before it announced the testing line was cut off for the day. JaxReady also said Saturday that there was an hourslong wait at the Legends Center walk-up site, which can test up to 400 per day. The line at the Legends Center was later cut off, as well.
As of Saturday, there had been 3,489 coronavirus-relate deaths reported in the state, 25 of which were reported in the last 24 hours. Of those additional deaths, none were reported in the 11 Northeast Florida counties tracked by News4Jax.
Hospitalizations statewide on Saturday increased to a total of 14,136 since the beginning of March. The state does not release how many of those have recovered. News4Jax has contacted area hospitals about the numbers of COVID patients they are currently treating, though most said they will only turn that information over to the health department.
Florida on Friday banned alcohol consumption at bars. State officials have attributed much of the new outbreak to young adults flocking to bars after they reopened in most of the state three weeks ago, with many of them ignoring social distancing restrictions aimed at lowering the virus’s spread.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said Friday that he still doesn’t plan to issue a statewide order requiring masks. He said that is best handled at the county and city level. Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry has also said he doesn’t plan to issue a mask mandate.
Elsewhere in Northeast Florida, the St. Augustine City Commission passed a resolution Friday morning that will require face coverings inside public buildings where social distancing is not possible. Between Friday and Wednesday, Nassau County Code Enforcement will begin visiting businesses to see if Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and mask recommendations are being followed. If businesses don’t voluntarily comply, the county is considering issuing an executive order making it mandatory.
DeSantis said the median age for people testing positive has dropped from in the 60s early in the outbreak to the 30s. He said that has helped decrease the fatality rate -- the disease hits older people harder --- but may be increasing the spread as younger adults are more likely to be asymptomatic and to congregate. He urged younger people to wear masks to avoid spreading the disease to their older family members and others who have underlying medical conditions.
In the interactive chart below, use the legend below to turn on and off the categories of data to show exactly what you want to see.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.