Three South Forida counties – Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade – have moved into the highest of three COVID-19 community transmission levels after a “data processing error” was noted in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Three categories as determined by the CDC are high, medium and low – with various recommendations to stop the spread of coronavirus, including mask wearing indoors recommended for the most severe level and additional measures for high-risk people.
For medium and low, you are encouraged to “wear a mask if you have symptoms, a positive test, or exposure to someone with COVID-19.” At the intermediate level “if you are at high risk for serious illness, consider wearing a mask indoors in public and taking additional precautions.”
Originally, the three counties were listed as “medium” as Martin, St. Lucie and Okeechobee with Indian River “low”.
The CDC on Thursday released a footnote to the data, which states that a “data processing error” had Florida’s case rate per. inhabitant blank in each county. The other two factors to calculate the level are admissions and testing of positivity.
“Note that Broward, Miami-Dade, Palm Beach Counties should have performed in the high CCL category, and Osceola County should have performed in the mid-sized CCL category,” the CDC footnote reads.
Jason Salemi, an epidemiologist and associate professor at the University of South Florida, posted on Twitter: “The more I think about this, the more annoying it is. 3 out of 10 people in Florida live in Dade, Broward or Palm Beach County. 3 out of 10.
A person in any of these counties will currently see this recommendation based on their medium “county level.”
Since the pandemic, Salemi has published data on coronavirus, including county and Florida information as well as nationwide on his website.
The high categories in three counties reflect rising cases, positive rates and hospitalizations.
Cases across the country are at their highest level since mid-February (60,204 last week), the positivity rate of 13.4% is highest since early February, hospital admissions (1,941) are highest since mid-March and the number of deaths (270 in 14 days) has risen from 230 two weeks ago.
In the state report on Friday, the latest figures for the cases are more than 20,000 over 39,374 a week ago with 32,956 two weeks ago and 8,040 eight weeks ago, which is the lowest since the weekly reports began. Last time the weekly figure was so high: 102,953 in the week ending February 11th. The record is 400,000.
The rolling daily average of seven days is 8,600, the most since 10,043 on February 13th. The number 1,127 on March 22 is the lowest since 1,106 June 8, 2020. Record: 65,277 January 11 (456,946 in one week).
On Friday, the most recent reporting date, 8,501 cases were posted, most since 8,896 on 12 February. One week ago it was 3,660 and on 10 May 13,395 was the most since 15,427 on 12 September. Daily record: 76,609 on 8 January.
Divided by county, the state report listed the following cases in the past week: Palm Beach 4,640, St. Lucie 584, Indian River 353, Martin 319, Okeechobee 29, Broward 7,828, Miami-Dade 13,968
Palm Beach County is at 17.0% first-time positivity (two weeks ago 9.2%), St. Lucie 10.3% (6.6% two weeks ago), Martin 12.4% (7.4% two weeks ago), Indian River 14.1% (7.4% two weeks ago), Okeechobee 6.4% (1.0% two weeks ago, Broward 14.3% (9.7% two weeks ago, Miami-Dade 13.4% (9.1% two weeks ago). Counties below target 5% are Dixie (3.9%).), Gilchrist (4.6%), Gulf (4.8%), Holmes (4.5%), Jackson (3.2%), Suwanee (4.1 %), Union (3.8%).
CDC lists overall positivity rates Palm Beach 17.45%, St. Lucie 13.57%, Martin 14.9%, Indian River 12.84%, Okeechobee 8.91%, Broward 19.04%, Miami-Dade 18.26%.
Hospital admissions are at 1,967 for covid (3.38% capacity) with one day ago 1,982 (3.4%), the highest number since 2,033 (3.56) on March 8th. Last week, it was 1,745 (2.98%) and on April 11, it was 892 (1.58%), at least since registration began in July 2020, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. The record was 17,295 (2.35%) on August 29 during the rise of the delta variant.
Foreign deaths are 74,330, an increase of 270 in two weeks (135 weekly), compared to 230 two weeks ago, 1,167 eight weeks ago. When the state was on weekly reports, it was 288 on January 7th. Early in the pandemic, the lowest weekly death toll was 144 on March 27.
The state report does not show county death rates, but the CDC issues weekly reports with 11 each in Palm Beach County and Broward with 21 in Miami-Dade and less than 10 in Martin, St. Louis. Lucie, Indian River, Okeechobee.