Florida adds 1,338 COVID deaths and reports 21,000+ new cases

‘It should shock us to the core,’ agriculture commissioner says

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Florida’s COVID-19 death toll has increased by 1,338 according to the latest data posted Thursday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Those fatalities did not all happen over the past day and span back weeks, but the total death count of 45,909 listed by the CDC on Thursday represents a significant increase from the 44,571 listed a day earlier.

“This is the highest death toll we’ve seen in a single report. It should shock us to the core,” tweeted state Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, a Democrat planning to run against Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis next year.

With the latest deaths added, the data shows that at least 5,700 people died in Florida in August with COVID-19, an average of about 184 per day. And it’s likely more August fatalities are still to be input.

The CDC receives its metrics from Florida’s health department and posts updates daily during the week, while the state posts its numbers in a public report once a week on Fridays.

Last month, the state health department switched from tallying deaths by the day they were verified to now tracking them by the date a person passed away. The deaths typically take several days to be processed, so a single date’s totals can slowly grow days later and the day-by-day increases appear smaller at first.

Meanwhile, Florida’s COVID-19 cases have increased by more than 21,000 over the past day after four consecutive days when the state reported fewer than 20,000 new cases.

Analysis of Thursday’s data from the CDC shows an increase of 21,723 cases from Wednesday.

The CDC, though, lists the daily increase as 21,392, citing a slightly higher total case count from Wednesday than previously listed.

The new CDC data shows Florida with 3,291,225 total verified COVID-19 cases since the start of the outbreak.

Over the past week, Florida is accounting for 13% of the new cases across the United States.

Recent metrics have suggested that the state might be starting to come down from the peak of the delta variant summer surge.

Hospitalizations have dropped from their recent apex, with the Florida Hospital Association saying that 14,682 patients were admitted with COVID-19 on Thursday.