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State Department Of Health Says CDC Overcounted Weekend's Daily COVID Cases

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Microscopic view of Coronavirus, a pathogen that attacks the respiratory tract. Analysis and test, experimentation. Sars. 3d render

The health department, which no longer publishes daily numbers, tweeted that Friday's daily case count was actually 21,500, Saturday's was 19,567 and Sunday's was 15,319.

The Florida Department of Health said late Monday that federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data overstated daily case counts from the weekend, numbers that would have given the state record tallies.

The health department, which no longer publishes daily numbers, tweeted that the correct daily case count on Friday was 21,500, Saturday's was 19,567 and Sunday's was 15,319.

The state agency said the three-day average is 18,795.

Those numbers differ significantly from the CDC's count of 56,600 new cases combined just on Saturday and Sunday. The CDC totals of 28,316 on Saturday and 28,317 on Sunday would have been records for daily cases in the state.

A reason for the discrepency was unclear.

The CDC said deaths related to COVID were 119 on Saturday and 120 on Sunday, bringing the seven-day average to 113. It is unclear from the state whether that number is incorrect as well.

Meantime, for the eighth straight day, hospitalizations in the state reached a record high, with 13,614 Floridians in a hospital with COVID-19, according to the Florida Hospital Association.

Florida continues to be the only state that has more than 20% of its inpatient hospital beds used by patients with COVID. Also, the numbers of COVID patients in intensive care units are increasing; 89% of the beds were occupied.

The surge in cases and deaths is caused by the delta variant of the coronavirus.

Florida hospital officials say most patients who are admitted to the hospital have not been vaccinated for COVID-19.

The increase in cases has brought more demand for testing and counties in the area are responding by opening their own sites.

Pinellas County opened one today in St. Petersburg and Hillsborough County opened two over the weekend.

Hillsborough officials expected to test about 500 people a day but more than 2,000 people got tested on the first day.

Long lines had died down by Monday afternoon at a site near the University of South Florida in Tampa.

Anthony Alvarez biked over and was in and out quickly. He needs to provide a negative COVID test to move into his new apartment and says he was grateful for the walk-up option.

"I tried everywhere, I tried CVS, and I don't have a vehicle so those were out of the question and it's 2-3- weeks out for an appointment," Alvarez said.

Sarasota and Manatee counties have added more testing sites as well.

Click here for a county-by-county testing and vaccination guide.

WMFE's Joe Byrnes, WUSF's Julio Ochoa and News Service of Florida contributed to this report.

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