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July 15 update: 64 new positive tests, three new hospitalizations, no new deaths

BY JENNIFER CABRERA

According to the state dashboard, Alachua County has a cumulative total of 2,322 people with COVID-19-positive test results, an increase of 64 from yesterday on 758 test results for a test positivity rate of 8.4%. The median age of positive tests (overall) in Alachua County remains at 29. Three new hospitalizations were reported, and no new deaths were reported.

The new hospitalizations are a 48-year-old female who tested positive on July 9, a 58-year-old male non-Florida resident who tested positive on July 9, and a 54-year-old male who tested positive on July 13. It is not known whether these people was admitted for COVID symptoms or tested positive after being admitted for other reasons.

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Of the 1,185 people who tested positive between June 11 (the beginning of the “spike” in cases) and July 5 (cutting it off at July 5 allows a conservative 10 days from the positive test to hospitalization), only 16 (1.4%) overall have been hospitalized, and none have died.

Around June 11, the number of new daily cases jumped about 10-fold, but then it stayed there. So we went from 4-8 per day to 50-80 per day. Scroll to the graphs at the bottom to see that the number of cases is now rising slowly; there has been no further jump.

This is a very different disease in young people than in the very old. The fear is that the increase in young cases will spread to older people, but so far that’s not happening (and the spike is now 34 days old).

Of the 64 people whose tests came back yesterday, 6 were 65 or older (only 62 are shown on the graphic, but the case line list still shows 6 over 65).

A total of twelve deaths have been reported in the county. Ten of the deaths were reportedly from one long-term care facility, Parklands Care Center. The 12 deaths were first reported as positive cases on April 9 (4), April 18 (2), April 20, April 21, April 23, May 10, May 12, and May 24.

107 people (total) have been hospitalized, an increase of three from yesterday. Eleven people have been added to the hospitalization total in the past week. Note that hospitalizations are not necessarily people who seek care for COVID; everyone who is admitted to the hospital for any reason is now tested, and a hospital administrator said last Tuesday during the governor’s press conference that 30%-40% of “COVID admissions” are people who are admitted for other reasons and test positive after admission. He also said they are almost always asymptomatic.

The website with current numbers of long-term care cases in Alachua County shows 108 cases. 44 of the cases are from Parklands Care Center (it appears that these patients are finally beginning to test negative–that’s a drop of 4 from the previous report), and Tacachale is now at 41. The chart says, “The data is not cumulative but reflects the information available for current residents and staff with cases as of yesterday’s date.” (The top line shows totals for the state.)

The county report shows a cumulative total of 79 cases in long-term care (an increase of 1 from yesterday) and 20 cases in a correctional facility.

Available hospital bed capacity in Alachua County is 17.4%, and ICU capacity is 6.17%.

North Florida Regional only has 1 ICU bed available, and Shands has 18 available. ICU beds are used for all intensive-care patients, not just COVID patients.

The state has 301,810 cases (an increase of 10,181 from yesterday on 50,803 new test results for a raw positive rate of 20%) and 4,521 deaths (an increase of 112 from yesterday, 40 of which were from long-term care facilities). Deaths are delayed and may go all the way back to March. At the same time, the number of deaths that actually occurred yesterday could increase at any time in the next few months.

Here are the dates of the new deaths:

7/14 – 17
7/13 – 20
7/12 – 11
7/11 – 10
7/10 – 5
7/9 – 12
7/8 – 12
7/7 – 5
7/6 – 4
7/5 – 4
7/4 – 4
7/3 – 2
7/2 – 1
6/29 – 1
6/26 – 3
6/25 – 1

The state also publishes a chart of the percentage of new tests that are positive by day (this chart is for the whole state), and yesterday’s positive rate was 13.59%. (The state charts only count people who test positive for the first time, and they may assign results to a different date than the day the test result came back. Our calculations are just positives/total tests for new results.)

Dade County has 24% of the state’s cases. Broward has 11%; Palm Beach 8%; Hillsborough has 7%; and Orange has 7%. Alachua County represents about 1.2% of the state’s population and 0.77% of the state’s cases (this is dropping).

53,142 test results have come back so far in Alachua County (up 758 from yesterday). 4.4% of the local tests have come back positive so far, and 64 tests came back positive since yesterday’s report, for a raw positive test rate of 8.4%. This chart is for Alachua County:

The University of Florida is reporting 48 positive tests out of 19,008 employees tested since May 6. This is a positive rate of 0.25%. Zero of the latest 382 tests were positive.

UF is also now reporting its testing of students, and it shows 149 positives out of 559 tests for a positive rate of 27%. 5 of the latest 19 tests were positive, for a positive rate of 26.3%.

According to the daily report, there are 1,905 cases in Gainesville, 131 in Alachua, 89 in Newberry, 42 in High Springs, 42 in Archer, 25 in Hawthorne, 14 in Micanopy, 9 in Waldo, 7 in Santa Fe, 6 in Tioga, 5 in LaCrosse, and 2 in Earleton. 6 cases are listed in the city of “Missing” in Alachua County, and 1 case is erroneously listed in “Wesley Chapel” in Alachua County. Location data is not available for all cases.

The 7-day moving average of new cases is at 76.9 through yesterday’s cases. Here is the 7-day average of new cases for the past 14 days.

Testing information

Drive-Thru COVID-19 Testing
The Florida Department of Health in Alachua County (DOH-Alachua) is offering drive-thru COVID-19 testing on Wednesdays from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and Fridays from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. DOH-Alachua is offering COVID-19 testing to Alachua County residents, regardless of symptoms. Residents who want a COVID-19 test are asked to call 352-334-8810 for an appointment. A referral from a doctor is not required. If your insurance covers this, it will be billed (no copay is required). If not, it is free.

COVID-19 Testing Results Phone Line
The Department of Health in Alachua County has set up a dedicated line for residents to call for COVID-19 test results. The phone number is 352-334-8828, and it is staffed Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.