COVID-19

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said how states deal with the aid will help determine how much more federal money they might receive in the future.
npr

Most states are taking their time spending the coronavirus relief aid Congress sent them earlier this spring, even as they push for more federal help.

The news also comes amid complaints that coronavirus test results were delayed for thousands of residents.
Centers For Disease Control and Prevention

MIAMI — State officials hired a Florida doctor to give coronavirus test results to more than 100,00 residents, even though he’d been on probation by the state medical board for a decade.

State Signs Off On Reopening Disney, Seaworld

4 hours ago

Walt Disney World Resort and SeaWorld on Friday received approval to reopen from Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation Secretary Halsey Beshears.

The Florida Department of Health on Sunday reported 56,163 people have tested positive for the coronavirus, an increase of 739 cases since Saturday.

Half of Florida COVID-19 Deaths Linked To Long-Term Care

4 hours ago

In a stark reminder of the toll of COVID-19 on seniors and their caregivers, slightly more than half of the reported deaths of Floridians from the disease are now linked to long-term care facilities, state figures show.

From job loss, to balancing work from home to the isolation of following stay-at-home orders, coronavirus has changed our everyday lives. WUSF is giving you a voice to share those experiences.

Today, we meet Sylwia Ok from Sarasota.

The professional photographer opened a new studio just four months before the pandemic temporarily closed her business.  In her own words, Sylwia shares her story of navigating a business during the stay-at-home order and the joy of being able to spend more time with her young daughter.

Florida has paid $16,279,852 in contracts to private laboratories for coronavirus testing as of Friday afternoon. The state’s COVID-19 information center tells WFSU “that number includes cost of collection kits and lab testing.”

The Tallahassee Developmental Center was already reeling from a big outbreak of COVID-19 over the past month. Now the Center is facing a lawsuit from one of its former residents who was among the infected.

Hero pay. Thank You pay. Service pay. Hazard pay.

These were the many names for temporary pay bumps that some stores, warehouses and factories gave to workers who risked their health to continue to show up on the job during the pandemic.

It's hard to say that an extra $3 an hour made a dramatic difference in Sammy Сonde's budget. Maybe a few more groceries — soup is a dinner favorite — or an occasional treat of a takeout meal after a particularly tiring workday.

During lockdown, Kiesha Preston has heard from many people facing physical, psychological and/or sexual abuse that the violence against them is escalating without reprieve.

Earlier in this pandemic, the shortage of tests for the coronavirus was a major problem in fighting the spread of COVID-19. The shortage was such that many hospitals and clinics would test only someone who had traveled to a country with an outbreak, had a known exposure to a positive case or showed symptoms of the disease.

But access to tests has improved significantly, and in some places, people can now get tested without having to show any symptoms at all. So if you can get tested, should you?

"Immunity passports" have been proposed as one way to reboot economies in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

The theory is this: The approval of the so-called passports would rely on the positive results from an antibody test of your collected blood sample. If you have antibodies to the coronavirus after recovering from an infection, you might be immune from future infection and therefore could be authorized to work and circulate in society without posing a risk to yourself or others.

At least, that's the idea.

Disney World workers protested Florida's unemployment system from their homes across Orlando.
Unite Here / WMFE

Pointing to the constitutional separation of powers, a Leon County circuit judge Thursday refused to order the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity to take steps to “fix” the state’s much-maligned unemployment compensation system to process and pay claims.

Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried
Ryan Dailey / WFSU

Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried asserted Thursday the governor and state Cabinet members should have been jointly coordinating the response to the coronavirus pandemic, as a new report showed another 173,731 first-time unemployment claims were filed last week in Florida.

Two studies found that those who developed COVID-19 were much more likely to die within a month than people without cancer who got it.
iStock

New research shows how dangerous the coronavirus is for current and former cancer patients.

Contact tracing is a traditional public health technique that involves detecting positive cases and monitoring their close contacts to keep contagious diseases from spreading.
iStock

The Florida Department of Health says it’s bringing on more contact tracers to keep track of COVID-19 cases, as the state continues to reopen.

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry joined local health executives Thursday at TIAA Bank Field to once again address the importance of mask-wearing. 

Fort Lauderdale’s city commission met virtually on Wednesday to discuss ongoing social distancing measures.

One of the main topics was last weekend's closure of one lane in each direction on Las Olas Boulevard. Mayor Dean  Trantalis said pedestrians and businesses appreciated it, as it provided additional space to walk on and expanded restaurant seating.

Virus Causes Detours In Getting Driver's Licenses

May 29, 2020

TALLAHASSEE --- Florida’s newest drivers still need to take behind-the-wheel tests to get licenses, but they should expect some changes in the way tests are conducted, at least while the coronavirus is still around.

In a memo this month, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles said that as state offices reopen to the public in counties such as Miami-Dade and Broward, road tests will be conducted with examiners outside of the vehicles.

Coronavirus brought schools to a halt in March, two months before the end of the year and dashing plans for prom and graduation.

Students at Seminole High School are documenting the effect of coronavirus on their lives and the absences they've endured, through poetry, pictures, and a special supplement to the yearbook.

Hillsborough County officials have announced the opening of three more public testing sites for Covid-19.

Gene Early, with the county's department of healthcare services, said they have been working with Suncoast Community Health Centers to partner with the state Department of Health to provide testing in Brandon.

A recent survey shows that coronavirus restrictions have cost the Pinellas County arts community nearly $5 million in lost revenue. Now there's a new questionnaire aimed to help.

Counties across of Tampa Bay can now operate short-term vacation rentals.

The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation has approved plans by Pasco and Polk counties to accept reservations and check-ins, effective immediately.

Visitors to Pinellas County beaches are no longer required to practice social distancing.

Public pools and playgrounds will also be allowed to operate at full capacity.

With COVID-19 concerns still pressing on the Fall semester for Florida universities and others nationwide, the Board of Governors approved the State University System’s plans to bring students back to campus.

The Florida Department of Health reported Thursday 53,285 people have tested positive for the coronavirus; an increase of 651 cases since Wednesday.

The department’s daily report showed 95 new infections in the Tampa Bay region.

It has become a political and cultural flashpoint, drawing a clear divide between the "masked" and the "masked-nots." The disdain runs between the consciously unmasked president of the United States and his deliberately mask-donning Democratic rival, all the way on down to those crossing paths — and often crossing each other — in the cereal aisle of the grocery store.

Before Philadelphia shut down to slow the spread of the coronavirus, Ed had a routine: most mornings he would head to a nearby McDonald's to brush his teeth, wash his face and — when he had the money — buy a cup of coffee. He would bounce between homeless shelters and try to get a shower. But since businesses closed and many shelters stopped taking new admissions, Ed has been mostly shut off from that routine.

Mounting evidence suggests the coronavirus is more common and less deadly than it first appeared.

The evidence comes from tests that detect antibodies to the coronavirus in a person's blood rather than the virus itself.

The tests are finding large numbers of people in the U.S. who were infected but never became seriously ill. And when these mild infections are included in coronavirus statistics, the virus appears less dangerous.

The University of Central Florida offers antibody testing on campus.
WMFE

ORLANDO - The University of Central Florida will offer antibody testing in partnership with Aventus Biolabs at a campus parking garage beginning Thursday.

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