Florida set a record for the highest single-day total of new coronavirus cases on Sunday, with 15,299 new infections, surpassing the previous high of 12,274 cases on April 4.
Some of the increase in cases is in part due to an increase in testing — Florida doubled its testing over the last month to 50,000 tests per day, several times the number of people that New York was testing at the height of its crisis — but the test positivity rate in the state has climbed to 19.6%, up from 5% one month ago, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
As the state’s total recorded number of cases jumped to 269,811, hospitals have faced an onslaught, with ICUs at 40 hospitals statewide reaching maximum capacity. The state has reported at least 4,242 deaths from the virus.
Representative Donna Shalala (D., Fla.) said the virus in the state is “out of control” and called a second economic shutdown likely.
“It’s out of control across the state because our governor won’t even tell everybody to wear masks. At least in Miami-Dade county, everyone must wear a mask when they’re outside,” she told CNN Saturday night. “This is an American tragedy.”
Though cases in the state are rising, Disney World has reopened, the Republican National Convention is set to begin in Jacksonville next month and Governor Ron DeSantis has said that he still wants schools to reopen next month.
“We know there are huge, huge costs for not providing the availability of in-person schooling. The risk of corona, fortunately, for students is incredibly low,” he said, pointing to other states and countries where campuses have reopened.
Florida’s record-breaking spike comes as the World Health Organization reported a record increase in global COVID-19 cases, with 230,370 more infections recorded in 24 hours. The global average of daily deaths has remained at about 5,000 per day.
The number of confirmed cases globally was approaching 13 million on Monday, while the death toll climbed over 560,000, with the U.S. reporting the largest single day increase with 66,000 new cases on Sunday.