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Florida tops 71,000 COVID-19 cases for fifth straight week

For the fifth straight week, Florida has posted more than 71,000 new COVID-19 cases — and more than 73,000 for the last four weeks.

The Florida Department of Health report released Friday shows 74,481 people tested positive for the coronavirus in the week of June 24 - 30. That brings Florida's total number of cases to 6,493,977.

The number has risen over the last two months due to spread of subvariants of the coronavirus. The state has topped 60,000 new cases every week since the week of May 13-19.

As of Thursday, the number of Florida residents who have died with COVID-19 was reported at 75,891.

The state's positivity rate for the week came in at 19.4%, the highest since the week of Jan. 21 - 27. The rate for the counties in the greater Tampa Bay region ranged between 18.5% (Pinellas County) and 22.1% (Polk County). The last time local rates were that high was the week of Jan. 28 - Feb. 3.

Hospitalizations for COVID-19 also remain high.

The Department of Health and Human Services reported Friday that 3,789 people were hospitalized in Florida with COVID-19. While that was down slightly from Thursday, it was up almost five percent from one week earlier.

Almost 12,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine were administered during the week, the most since Feb. 25 - March 3.

More than a third of that was in the 6 month to 4-year-old age group, which was authorized to receive the shots June 18. Just over 5,100 vaccines have been administered to that group since then — about 0.4% of the more than one million Florida children in that demographic.

About 24% of the 1.7 million children aged 5-11 years old have been vaccinated since the vaccine was approved for them last November.

The News Service of Florida provided additional information for this story.

Copyright 2022 WUSF Public Media - WUSF 89.7. To see more, visit WUSF Public Media - WUSF 89.7.

Mark Schreiner has been the producer and reporter for "University Beat" on WUSF 89.7 FM since 2001 and on WUSF TV from 2007-2017.