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Coronavirus Florida

church service
The River Church on Youtube

Many houses of worship have canceled services due to the coronavirus outbreak. But a Tampa church welcomed hundreds on Sunday, a violation of Hillsboorough County's stay-at-home order.

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

Total positive cases of coronavirus as of 6 p.m. Sunday, March 29, according to the Florida Department of Health.

4,768 – Florida Residents | 8 – Florida Cases Repatriated | 182 – Non-Florida Residents | 60 – Deaths

Gov. Ron DeSantis has temporarily removed some requirements to file for unemployment, but the AFL-CIO believes major changes need to be made to the entire system. The group held an online press conference with recently unemployed workers to stress the need for an update.

The emergency alert text message you received over the weekend — warning you to social distance — was from the state. 

A graphic showing 3,763 cases of coronavirus
Florida Department of Health

Three more people in Pinellas County have died from coronavirus, bringing the county’s total death toll so far to four, as the state of Florida reported a new record leap in coronavirus cases – 863 more in a day -- officials said Saturday.

A bag of Covid-19 testing supplies
Manatee County Department of Health

Sarasota County has opened a drive-thru Covid-19 testing site but like others locations across the region, resources are very limited.

A male and female medical officials take a medical test sample from a person in a car at a drive-thru sitesample
Manatee County Government

The Florida Department of Health announced the first positive case of COVID-19 in Manatee County on March 1.

Twenty-five days later, the county is opening its first drive-thru testing site. The four-day event starts Thursday and is limited to 200 people with an appointment and a doctor's prescription.

Medical supplies
iStock

As the spread of COVID-19 in Florida increases the load on the health care system, Pinellas and Hillsborough county officials are asking for donations of medical supplies.

Gov. Ron DeSantis
Fresh Take Florida

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday said that Florida's Surgeon General Scott Rivkees will be issuing a new health advisory in response to the coronavirus.

People 65 and older, and anyone with underlying medical conditions, will be asked to stay at home for the next 14 days to minimize their exposure to COVID-19.

Dentist and patient discussion about planned teeth treatment in dental clinic office
iStock

As COVID-19 continued to spread, Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an executive order prohibiting any unnecessary, non-urgent or non-emergency medical procedures in Florida.

But dentists, like other medical professionals, are still able to see patients in critical condition at this time.

A woman and two men stand in front of a restaurant kitchen.
Cathy Carter

The restaurant industry has been especially hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic.

Like many other states, Governor Ron DeSantis recently issued an executive order that blocks Florida restaurants from serving food in their dining rooms.

moms and kids in kitchen
Braulio Colón

For anyone on a special diet or with a picky eater at home, these are especially trying times.

Bull statues on USF Tampa campus
Carl Lisciandrello/WUSF Public Media

State officials made the decision to cancel all in-person classes for the remainder of the school term.  

Schools and universities across the Tampa Bay area are now having to gear up for the transition to online instruction.

coronavirus
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

There will be no "shelter-in-place" order for Floridians to stay at home, Gov. Ron DeSantis said Sunday afternoon, although state like New York, California and Illinois are telling its residents to leave home only for emergencies.

Seminole Hard Rock building
Seminole Hard Rock Casino

Despite one Tampa Bay area politicians' calls for it to shut down for 30 days due to the danger of the oronavirus, the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa remains open.

A green lifeguard stand on Siesta Beach, with a few people milling about.
Daylina Miller/WUSF Public Media

Sarasota and Manatee counties will close all public beaches amid worries about the spread of the coronavirus.

Governor Ron DeSantis
Florida Governor's Office

Governor Ron DeSantis said Wednesday that supply delays are slowing the state's ability to ramp up testing for COVID-19.

a stock picture of the coronavirus
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Coronavirus has upended daily life, and for those who care for children, it can be hard to know what to say, or how to explain. WUSF’s Kerry Sheridan spoke with Dr. Judith Bryant, a USF professor of psychology who specializes in child development, for advice on answering their toughest questions.

WikiCommons

Manatee County Commissioners have declared a local state of emergency in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The move comes as the total cases in Manatee County climbed to five over the weekend.

A man walks by an empty patio outside of The Tavern
Delaney Brown / WUSF Public Media

Local businesses are starting to feel the impact of coronavirus.

As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention urges people to continue social distancing, some local businesses are seeing a traffic slow down as a result.

Gov. DeSantis at the podium
Florida Channel

Gov. Ron DeSantis says a drive-through testing site for COVID-19 will be set up this week in Broward County, which has been hit particularly hard by coronavirus. He said during a press conference Sunday night in Tallahassee it will be manned by Florida National Guard troops.

massive waterfront resort
TradeWinds

The coronavirus outbreak comes during one of the busiest tourist seasons in the Tampa Bay region. 

Senator Rick Scott
Office of Senator Rick Scott

After a meeting in Miami with President of Brazil Jair Bolsonaro Monday, Senator Rick Scott has decided to self-quarantine.

He was alerted by the Brazilian Embassy Thursday that Bolsonaro's communications director had tested positive for coronavirus.

coronavirus
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Florida Department of Health has announced six new cases of coronavirus, including a Broward County man who attended a recent conference in Tampa and a tourist visiting for Bike Week.

Man at podium with men and women behind him
News Service of Florida

Gov. Ron DeSantis has declared a state of emergency as Florida battles an outbreak of the new coronavirus that has already killed two people. The governor also appealed for calm, even as he took that step Monday.