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CDC lists more Florida counties at high risk for COVID transmission

Kirsty Wigglesworth

The 24 counties include nearly all of Central Florida, coast to coast, and South Florida. Two weeks ago, only nine counties were at high risk of transmission.

The latest surge of COVID-19 across Florida has placed more than 20 counties at high risk of community spread during the previous week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.

The 24 counties include nearly all of Central Florida, coast to coast, and South Florida.

As of Thursday, the CDC added Osceola, Orange, Brevard, Lake, Sumter, Volusia, Seminole, Flagler, Brevard, St. Lucie, Martin, Indian River, Monroe, Manatee and Charlotte.

Two weeks ago, only nine counties were at high risk of transmission: Hillsborough, Pinellas, Polk, Pasco, Sarasota, Alachua, Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach.

The levels, measured over a seven-day period ending Thursday, are based on a combination of new cases per capita, testing positivity rates and hospitalizations.

Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The Florida Channel
Green counties are considered low-level COVID areas. Yellow are medium and orange high.

At high level, the CDC recommends wearing a mask indoors in public and on public transportation, staying current on COVID vaccines and getting tested if showing symptoms. If you are at high risk for severe illness, consider taking additional precautions.

State data showed that over a seven-day period last week, there were more than 71,000 new cases and 32 deaths related to COVID. The positivity rate was between 20 and 25 percent.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Thursday released data that showed 2,806 Florida hospital inpatients had COVID, up from 2,352 a week earlier. The data also showed that 218 patients with COVID-19 were in intensive care, up slightly from 212 a week earlier.

While cases counts and hospitalizations on up, they remain significantly lower than early in the year.

A subvariant of omicron — B.A.2.12.1 — has been spreading across Florida and is expected to become the dominant strain this summer. While the variant is highly contagious, it does not seem to cause more severe cases of COVID — especially among people who are vaccinated and boosted.

Corrected: June 8, 2022 at 8:17 AM EDT
This article was updated to add Manatee County to the high-risk category.
Originally founded in December 2006 as an independent grassroots publication dedicated to coverage of health issues in Florida, Health News Florida was acquired by WUSF Public Media in September 2012.