Coronavirus Live Updates: Florida Adds More Than 3,600 New Cases, 92 New Resident Deaths
This post will be updated today, Tuesday, May 4, and through the week with the latest information on COVID-19 in South Florida.
WLRN staff continues to add updates on testing and vaccination sites, executive orders and messages from government officials, and the latest news on COVID-19. You can find information on free food and food distributions here.
The dedicated website for the Florida Department of Health, including information about the numbers of cases, can be found here.
The dedicated website from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention can be found here.
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Florida Adds More Than 3,600 New Cases, 92 New Resident Deaths
Updated Tuesday at 5:45 p.m.
Florida’s Department of Health confirmed an additional 3,682 positive cases of COVID-19 Tuesday. The state has a total of 2,249,535 confirmed positive cases, according to the state's health department.
Tuesday's update also included the announcement of 92 new resident deaths, increasing the statewide number of Floridians who died to 35,399. Factoring in non-resident deaths the number of deaths due to COVID-19 is 36,102.
Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties make up 11,902 of those reported deaths. Monroe County has reported 49 deaths due to COVID-19.
— WLRN News
South Florida Schools Say State Order Does Not Apply, Masks Still Required In Schools
Updated Tuesday at 2 p.m.
Gov. Ron DeSantis’ suspension of emergency COVID-19 orders in Florida will not affect the mask policies at South Florida schools for the remainder of the school year, according to the school districts. The plans for summer and fall are not as clear.
Masks are still required for the remainder of the 2020-2021 school year until further notice at Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Broward County Public Schools, Monroe County School District and the School District of Palm Beach County.
The Florida Department of Education confirmed that the governor’s order, which he signed Monday and which invalidates all remaining local emergency COVID orders, would not impact “any school district’s policies for the remainder of the 2020-21 school year,” according to Miami-Dade Schools.
Read more at our news partner the Miami Herald.
— By Michelle Marchante, Colleen Wright and Gwen Filosa / Miami Herald
Reported COVID Variant Cases In Florida Doubled In Two Weeks
Updated Tuesday at 12:30 p.m.
Over 10,000 cases of COVID-19 “variants of concern” have been reported in Florida, state health officials disclosed Monday, more than double the total just two weeks earlier and an indication that the spread is accelerating.
Through May 1, Miami-Dade led the state with 2,279 variant cases. Broward County reported the next highest amount with 1,950 cases and Palm Beach reported the fourth highest volume with 685 cases.
By far, the most common variant was the B.1.1.7 — the strain first detected in the United Kingdom — reported in 9,050 cases statewide. Estimated to be 60% more infectious than the original dominant strain of COVID-19, it is also believed to result in more severe illness and higher hospitalization rates. The most recent estimate is that it is 67% more deadly.
Read more at our news partner the South Florida Sun Sentinel.
— By Kate Santich and Cindy Krischer Goodman
Broward County Students Can Get Their COVID Vaccine On Campus. Miami-Dade Will Follow
Updated Tuesday at 5:35 a.m.
Students 16 and older who attend a public school in Broward County can get a COVID-19 vaccine on campus this week. So can their families and school employees.
On Tuesday, May 4, Pfizer vaccinations will be offered at the following schools:
In Pompano Beach, vaccines will be available at Blanche Ely High School, Bright Horizons Center, and Cypress Run Education Center.
Read more from our news partner at The Miami Herald.
— By Michelle Marchante / The Miami Herald
Palm Beach County Reopens Rental Assistance Portal
Updated Tuesday at 5:33 a.m.
Palm Beach County has reopened its rental assistance portal for past-due tenants who fell behind on their payments because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The online portal has been opened twice since March 11. Both times it soon closed after receiving high volumes of applications.
It opened for a third time Monday morning. As of May 3, officials received 3,105 applications for rent and utility assistance and disbursed $5.6 million, a spokeswoman said. Last week, the agency said rental assistance applicants who were approved received an average $5,500 while those seeking help for utilities received an average $276.
Read more from our news partner at The South Florida Sun Sentinel.
— By Ron Hurtibise / The South Florida Sun Sentinel