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Coronavirus

News about coronavirus in Florida and around the world is constantly emerging. It's hard to stay on top of it all but Health News Florida and WUSF can help.

Our responsibility at WUSF News is to keep you informed, and to help discern what’s important for your family as you make what could be life-saving decisions. We want to hear from you:

The Florida Department of Health map breaks down the coronavirus cases by ZIP code, as well as the number of cases and deaths across Florida.

Sign up for our newsletter to get daily updates and analysis from our team and NPR, and go to our Coronavirus Q&A to submit your questions.

The state department of health is providing daily updates on the number of people infected in the state. It also is providing a list of things you need to know.

Here's how you can help your children fight boredom while they're not in school.

Check out the Centers for Disease Control And Prevention website for updates and a national map. 

If you think you might have coronavirus, call the Florida Department of Health’s 24-hour hotline at 866-779-6121 or email COVID-19@flhealth.gov

The Internal Revenue Service is under huge pressure to quickly disperse the $1,200 payments promised to most people in the $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief bill. Experts say it could take months for everyone to get checks — with some people possibly waiting until after they file their taxes next year.

Over the past 10 years the IRS budget has been reduced by roughly 20%, leaving the agency with aging technology and forcing it to cut back on staff and training, according to experts. The added stress of the coronavirus is already causing customer service headaches.

Two women with blue and pink hair wearing masks stand at the entrance to their store behind a table covered with cloth masks.
Daylina Miller/WUSF Public Media

Companies around the country are switching gears to help out during the COVID-19 pandemic. Breweries and cosmetic companies are making hand sanitizer. General Motors, Ford and Tesla are making ventilators.

When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently recommended that people wear cloth masks in public settings, the Disco Dolls in Seminole Heights knew how they could help.

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jba.af.mil

It's going to take more than a pandemic to keep people from voting. At least in Polk County, where just under 15 percent of registered voters went to the polls in six cities. That's about average or a little higher than normal.

Updated at 7:38 p.m. ET

President Trump and congressional Democrats appeared to have a ways to go on Wednesday before they could agree on details for more relief spending for the coronavirus disaster.

The Miami Beach Convention Center will soon become a temporary 450-bed field hospital for a potential surge of coronavirus patients.

Commencement ceremony
University of South Florida

The University of South Florida is announcing plans for the thousands of students whose traditional commencement ceremonies scheduled for May have been cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak.

immigration rope lines
iStock

An organization representing immigration attorneys is suing the Trump administration, saying it puts lawyers and immigrants at risk by not relaxing legal deadlines during the coronavirus pandemic.

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, young people have been heavily criticized for not taking social distancing seriously.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

The coronavirus pandemic has caused a global scramble for essential medical supplies like masks, gloves, gowns and ventilators. In the panic, governments have imposed or considered new barriers to trade, trying to protect their own access to scarce supplies.

Updated at 10:58 a.m. ET

If you've checked your mail lately, you may have noticed there's just not much of it.

The U.S. Postal Service could be another casualty of the coronavirus pandemic.

"A lot of businesses have ceased to do advertising through the mail," says Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., "and as a result, mail volume has collapsed."

He says the decline could be as much as 60% by the end of the year, which he says would be "catastrophic" for the agency.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis wants to stock hospitals with Hydroxychloroquine. DeSantis has been  working with Teva Pharmaceutical Industries to get shipments of the drug.

The coronavirus has dealt a body blow to U.S. workers. So far, it's women who are paying much of the price.

The Labor Department says more than 700,000 jobs were eliminated in the first wave of pandemic layoffs last month. Nearly 60% of those jobs were held by women.

WUSF will be providing the latest news and information on coronavirus in Tampa Bay and across the state. Here are the latest developments:

arm holding a bunch of plastic tools.
Courtesy: USF Health

Funding medical research can be difficult in the best of times – let alone during a pandemic.

But donations to the University of South Florida’s Pandemic Research and Response Fund are helping the school’s research teams and front-line workers combat the spread of the coronavirus.

Airmen in face masks
Airman 1st Class Mikayla Heineck / USAF

Health officials say the most important way to fight the coronavirus is by keeping our distance from others.

But the U.S. military is made up of tight groups, like the crew of a refueling plane or a submarine. To stay operational during the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s had to make some changes.

Robin Sussingham spoke to U.S. Air Force Col. Scott J. Calder, CENTCOM’s Command Surgeon. CENTCOM is based at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa.

Florida Department of Health COVID-19 dashboard
Florida Department of Health

The latest information from the Florida Department of Health shows that 14,747 people have contracted COVID-19 in Florida, and 296 people have died in the state.

Updated at 7:18 p.m. ET

President Trump acknowledged that he learned only recently about a warning earlier this year from a top adviser about the risks of the coronavirus — but he defended his actions on Tuesday at a news conference.

"I couldn't have done it any better," Trump said about his and the administration's handling of the pandemic.

Gov. Ron DeSantis
The Florida Channel

Gov. Ron DeSantis is updating the media on the coronavirus outbreak in Florida.

Coronavirus During Holy Week: How The Faithful Are Managing

Apr 7, 2020
Cheyce Batchelor/Fresh Take Florida

Christian and Jewish leaders commemorating some of the holiest days in their faiths in coming days – Easter and Passover – are wrestling with decisions of death and life, whether to host in-person religious services during the pandemic. Most are doing so online instead.

Updated at 10 a.m. ET

It's a strange and tragic pattern in some cases of COVID-19: The patient struggles through the first week of illness, and perhaps even begins to feel a little better.

Then suddenly they crash.

County and municipal marinas are closed, popular sandbars are empty for the first time in recorded history, and there are no cruise ships packed with passengers sailing out of South Florida’s ports. On the surface, there doesn’t seem to be a whole lot going on when it comes to life on the water, due to the COVID-19 crisis.

That’s on the surface.

Mysterious Heart Damage, Not Just Lung Troubles, Befalling COVID-19 Patients

Apr 7, 2020

While the focus of the COVID-19 pandemic has been on respiratory problems and securing enough ventilators, doctors on the front lines are grappling with a new medical mystery.

Florida’s projected peak of COVID-19 cases is now expected to come sooner. Researchers at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation now say Florida will have its peak April 21, with 242 people dying in a single day.

President Trump asked Americans during Monday's coronavirus briefing to maintain their social distancing through the end of the month to bring the coronavirus under control.

And if people really do observe the stay-at-home orders, models suggest that the epidemic could wane by summer. There's also hope that the changing weather will help slow the spread of the virus, though that's far from certain.

But there's a problem. Even if things "get better all of a sudden," as the president suggested he hoped would happen, the virus will not have gone away.

WUSF will be providing the latest news and information on coronavirus in Tampa Bay and across the state. Here are the latest developments:

man and woman sit on chairs and speak to each other in front of City of Tampa seal
City of Tampa Facebook

Public and charter K-12 schools around the state are conducting classes online through May 1 due to COVID-19.

Hillsborough County Schools superintendent Addison Davis is indicating that may be the way it is for the rest of the school year.

Florida Department of Health COVID-19 dashboard
Florida Department of Health

COVID-19 infections show no signs of slowing in Florida.

Monday evening’s report from the Florida Department of Health said 13,629 people have tested positive statewide. That's an increase of 1,279 since Sunday evening.

two people holding hands
iStock

It’s a difficult time for many families right now, especially for those of COVID-19 patients needing to distance from loved ones.

Closed sign
PxFuel.com

Hillsborough County officials moved Monday to make sure small businesses that can't pay their rent during the COVID-19 pandemic won't get evicted.

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