Florida Has Tested More Than 100,000 People For Coronavirus
Florida has tested more than 100,000 people for the coronavirus as it works to stop the disease from spreading, the state announced Saturday.
The state is second only to New York in the number of tests administered, officials said in a release.
“This is an incredible achievement by any measure, and it is all due to the hard work and great sacrifice by Florida’s thousands of health care workers and first responders who are on the front lines of this fight,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said in the release. “These professionals will have the full weight of the State of Florida behind them as they continue to devote themselves to keeping Florida’s families safe.”
After a slow start, the state ramped up its testing in March and the number of confirmed cases in Florida jumped exponentially.
As of 11 a.m. Saturday, Florida had 11,111 cases of COVID-19 and 191 deaths. Florida has tested 102,108 people, with 90,956 of the tests coming back negative.
About 2 weeks ago, the state was testing around 2,500 people a day. Now, it’s testing more than 10,000 per day. The number of confirmed cases has grown during that time period from around 300 per day to more than 1,000.
New York, the center of the outbreak in the United States has tested 283,621 people. California has tested 94,800 people and Washington, where the first case was confirmed, has tested 82,599.
Florida’s efforts to test more people have been hampered by a lack of supplies, many of which are being sent to New York.
A testing site at Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium, for example, opened on March 29, only to close two days later when the tests ran out. It reopened last week after more tests arrived.
And it appears more testing supplies are headed to the Tampa Bay area. Hillsborough County announced on Saturday that it would begin testing all of its first responders and nursing home staff thanks to 44,000 rapid test kits that it expects to receive.
Results from the tests, which involve a small finger prick, are returned within 10 minutes.