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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

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 this 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

11 hours ago
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

15 hours ago

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.

Are you having to isolate because you’ve contracted the virus? Or have you been staying in contact with a family member who is?

WUSF wants to give you a voice, and help tell your story. Answer a few questions below and we may contact you for an upcoming story.

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.

Updated at 7:50 p.m. ET

President Trump said "we certainly want to try" to lift restrictions on life in the U.S. by April 30 but he made no definitive commitment at a news conference on Monday at the White House.

Trump sought to walk a tightrope between grim warnings about a new spike in fatalities forecast for the coming weeks and upbeat exuberance about how well he said the response is going.

"Tremendous progress has been made in a very short period," Trump said.

empty jury box
iStock

Trying to prevent the spread of COVID-19 at courthouses across the state, Florida Supreme Court Chief Justice Charles Canady on Monday extended a suspension of jury trials and many other in-person court proceedings through May.

Florida has added capacity in staff and technology for its beleaguered unemployment website, which had problems even before an unprecedented surge of applicants thrown out of work by the coronavirus.

Updated at 6 p.m. ET Tuesday

The pandemic has emptied out U.S. streets as Americans stay home to avoid spreading the coronavirus. Less driving means fewer car crashes. Fewer car crashes means big savings for auto insurers.

And at least three companies have decided to pass those savings along to their customers.

More than 10,000 people have now died from COVID-19 in the U.S., as the coronavirus pandemic's horrible toll hit another milestone on Monday.

The U.S. is reporting more COVID-19 cases than any other country in the world, with nearly 350,000 people testing positive for the coronavirus, according to a COVID-19 dashboard created by Johns Hopkins University's Whiting School of Engineering, which reports coronavirus numbers in near real time.

covid-19 testing supplies
iStock

BayCare Health Plans is waiving all out-of-pocket costs for the 8,000 people who are covered through its Medicare Advantage plans.

The Final Blow: Coronavirus Pandemic Shuts The Door Permanently At Florida Dog Track

Apr 6, 2020
racing programs and beer on a table
Sam Thomas/Fresh Take Florida

There was supposed to be ceremony. The last of the dogs would trickle out to happily live out new lives with adoption agencies and new owners. There was supposed to be tears. Owners would sweep the dust and dirt from empty kennels and turn off the lights. For the very last time.

Florida’s unemployment system problems date back to 2013 when the state changed the process, shrinking benefits and making it harder for people to apply for them. Those changes were made under former governor and now U.S. Senator, Rick Scott. Now, Governor Ron DeSantis says he’s clearing the way for DEO to do whatever they need to fix the problems.

As the United States tumbles into a coronavirus recession, the Federal Reserve is using its nearly unlimited power to generate cash to cushion the fall.

"The Fed is doing everything they can to keep financial markets functioning and credit available to households and firms," former Fed Chair Janet Yellen said during a forum organized by the Brookings Institution.

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

Cartoon of voting slip in outgoing mail
sos.ca.gov

The Florida Democratic Party is putting a major effort into getting potential voters to register by mail. That comes in part because of the coronavirus and despite glitches reported in the state registration system.

boats on the water
Courtesy James Leckie

Many businesses have been shuttered because of coronavirus, but boat ramps and marinas in Hillsborough and Pinellas County remained open over the weekend.

Updated at 9:12 p.m. ET

President Trump doubled down Sunday on the suggestion that people facing the coronavirus should consider taking an anti-malaria drug that has not been proven to be an effective treatment.

map of coronavirus cases in Florida on April 5, 2020
Florida Department of Health

Covid-19 has claimed the lives of 221 people in Florida, and infected more than 12,000, according to Sunday evening’s update from the Florida Department of Health.

A shot of inside a church with people in white robes singing
Kerry Sheridan/WUSF

More than 1,000 people tuned in online to see the full choir sing at Palm Sunday services at the Church of the Redeemer in Sarasota. But the church itself was closed, and no one was inside.

The service that broadcasted online at 8:50 am was actually pre-recorded more than two weeks ago, before Florida’s governor issued a statewide stay-at-home order, but around the time coronavirus cases in New York began to surge.

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