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News about coronavirus in Florida and around the world is constantly emerging. It's hard to stay on top of it all but Health News Florida can help. Our responsibility is to keep you informed, and to help discern what’s important for your family as you make what could be life-saving decisions.

Tampa Bay Area Reports Most Coronavirus Cases In One Week

Friday is the second day in a row the state reported at least 13,000 new cases. Another 96 deaths were added on Friday, too.

More people than ever tested positive for the coronavirus in the greater Tampa Bay region this week.

The state reported 14,199 cases of the virus in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Manatee, Sarasota, Polk, Pasco and Hernando Counties for the week that ended today.

The second highest weekly total for the region was in July.

That is also the last time Florida reported a higher number of weekly cases statewide, adding nearly 65,000 this week.

The state saw positivity rates for new tests this week range from 7.9 to 9.6 percent. Rates the last week of July, when the state reported more than 68,000 cases, ranged from 10.5 to 12.2 percent.

Friday is the second day in a row the state reported at least 13,000 new cases.

Florida also added 96 COVID-19 related deaths to it's toll since Thursday; 713 deaths were reported this week.

As of 4 p.m. Friday, 5,182 people were hospitalized in Florida, up 50 from Thursday.

State Totals (as of Friday, Dec. 18):

  • Positive Tests – 1,181,483
  • Deaths – 20,690

Daily Changes:

  • State: Positive Tests – 13,000 | Deaths - 96
  • Greater Tampa Bay Region: Positive Tests – 2,630| Deaths - 34

Daily Testing (statewide):

  • Tests Received – 169,137 tests | Positivity Rate – 8.75%

ABOUT THE DATA: The Florida Department of Health produces a daily update around 11 a.m. with information about COVID-19 cases and deaths that were reported over the previous 24 hours. Cases and deaths in the report may have happened days or weeks earlier, according to state officials. The state separately tracks cases and deaths that occurred on specific days on its dashboard and those totals are frequently updated.

Florida COVID-19 daily total of positive tests/deaths for the last two weeks:

  • Dec. 18: 13,000/96
  • Dec. 17: 13,148/104
  • Dec. 16: 11,541/125
  • Dec. 15: 9,411/94
  • Dec. 14: 8,452/138
  • Dec. 13: 8,958/84
  • Dec. 12: 10,577/72
  • Dec. 11: 11,699/126
  • Dec. 10: 11,335/135
  • Dec. 9: 9,592/89
  • Dec. 8: 7,985/98
  • Dec. 7: 7,711/106
  • Dec. 6: 8,436/96
  • Dec. 5: 10,431/91

Copyright 2020 WUSF Public Media - WUSF 89.7

Stephanie Colombini joined WUSF Public Media in December 2016 as Producer of Florida Matters, WUSF’s public affairs show. She’s also a reporter for WUSF’s Health News Florida project.