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Florida

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

The Florida Department of Health reported 10,328 new cases of the coronavirus on Saturday and 90 new deaths.

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

Florida health officials reported nearly 9,000 new cases of the coronavirus on Friday, crushing a previous single-day high of 5,511 set on Wednesday.

Marriott Hotel in downtown Tampa
GOOGLE maps

Hotels in the Tampa Bay area had their second-best month ever in February.

But, what a difference a month makes.

summer camp poster
Susan Giles Wantuck/WUSF Public Media

Now that the school year is coming to a close, parents are trying to figure out what their children will do this summer.

Many camps are being canceled, and even if they aren't, some parents don't feel comfortable sending their children out during the coronavirus pandemic.

Health Care worker's hands holding COVID-19 testing kit.
Manatee County Government

Governor Ron DeSantis was in Sarasota Tuesday to discuss the state’s latest response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking at a new COVID-19 testing site at the University Town Center Mall, the governor said Florida is ramping up testing and loosening restrictions on who can get screened for the virus.

business closing notice
CARL LISCIANDRELLO/WUSF PUBLIC MEDIA

Under phase one of the plan announced Wednesday by Governor Ron DeSantis, a number of businesses in Florida will be allowed to reopen Monday. But one analyst says there are still lots of unknowns.

Aquarium tank with people viewing fish
Visit Tampa Bay

Travel-related businesses, particularly those in Florida, have taken a hit from coronavirus and the safer-at-home policies put in place.

As a matter of fact, officials with the U.S. Travel Association say the impact is nine times greater than that of the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.

Congressional leaders are now working with the USTA to expand relief efforts to help the embattled industry recover.

oysters
Jessica Meszaros / WUSF

Welcome to season two of The Zest podcast! We're starting off with a trip to Terra Ceia Aquatic Preserve, at the mouth of Tampa Bay, to sample some Florida oysters. WUSF reporter Jessica Meszaros takes a boat ride with Brian Rosseger, owner of Lost Coast Oyster Company, to his floating oyster farm. "There is an agricultural revolution that's happening right now," Rosseger says. "And it's happening in the oceans."


a mama bird with its speckled baby bird
Mary Lundeberg

Beach closures due to the coronavirus pandemic are devastating Florida’s tourism industry but they could be beneficial for shorebirds that nest on the sand this time of year.  

Typically birds like least terns, American oystercatchers and black skimmers have to share beaches with hordes of beachgoers as they lay their eggs on bare sand or in shelly areas.

Woman in deep sea diving gear floating beneath ocean surface
Mission Blue

Sylvia Earle has lived underwater as an aquanaut, walked the sea floor at a depth of over 1,200 feet and has led more than 100 ocean expeditions. The first female chief scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration grew up in Dunedin and says her decades of diving have offered her an up-close view of the degradation of the world’s oceans.


Howard Frankland Bridge
APALAPALA / WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

Taking advantage of what he terms “a trickle” of traffic on major thoroughfares due to residents heeding stay-at-home coronavirus orders, Gov. Ron DeSantis said he will accelerate various road projects throughout the state.

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

With more than 900 new positive test results added since Saturday evening, Florida is rapidly approaching 5,000 people who have tested positive for COVID-19.

According to figures released by the Florida Department of Health just after 6 p.m. Sunday, 4,950 people have tested positive for novel coronavirus. That’s up by 912 from the same time Saturday, and almost 1,800 since Friday evening.

Hospital building at night
Wikimedia Commons

As the number of coronavirus cases in Florida continues to grow exponentially, some predictive models show things could get bad, fast. Many hospitals are gearing up for a possible surge in sick patients.

A woman with short hair sits at a desk
Steve Newborn / WUSF Public Media

Concerns about the coronavirus are expected to have an effect at the ballot box during Tuesday's presidential primary.

Local public schools are preparing for online learning in case they have to close due to coronavirus.

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.

Kerry Sheridan/WUSF

One of the confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Tampa Bay area is a patient who has no recent history of travel. 

The man is in his 60s, and is a resident of Manatee County. His name has not been released.

Graph of Florida being the number one out-of state destination to move to
Hire A Helper

We’ve all seen the signs of Florida’s population growth: more housing complexes are being built, traveling to work takes a few minutes longer than before, the parking lots have less empty spaces. But where are all these people coming from?

In a study on migration, HireAHelper found that in 22 states, Florida is the top destination for those who decide to move out.

More than four million Floridians are likely to experience a freeze over the next two nights, including rural areas of Southwest Florida by Wednesday morning. The cold spell follows a week of abnormal warmth in the Sunshine State, when more than a dozen record highs were tied or broken.

It's been more than a decade since Congress passed the REAL ID Act. It is based on recommendations from the 9/11 Commission, which set standards for issuing sources of identification, such as driver's licenses. 

State health officials are funding a study to explore the relationship between human health and algae bloom toxins. 

Michael Kelly got his man.

Speaking at an event formally introducing Jeff Scott as the new head coach of the University of South Florida football team, the Vice President of Athletics said that Scott was “unequivocally our first and only choice.”

Stigma, poverty, immigration issues and access to care are among the main causes to blame for Florida’s high rates of HIV and AIDS.

Computer simulations have long helped train doctors in complex medical procedures. Now, tens of thousands of Florida teachers and school staff are using online simulators to learn how to talk to troubled students.

A recent study by the University of Florida may help prevent the spread of a disease that's damaging tomatoes globally.

Early Voting Here sign
WUSF

Early voting on college campuses was allowed in Florida for the first time in 2018. A new study suggests the convenience helped increase the number of young voters.

A report released Tuesday says that the nation will face extremely hot days - along with deaths from killer heat waves - in the near future if carbon emissions aren't reduced. And perhaps not surprisingly, Florida may experience some of its hottest days on record.

photo of hurricane
NOAA

By Carl Lisciandrello

Researchers at Colorado State University are maintaining their prediction of a near-average 2019 hurricane season.

Pinellas County officials are urging residents and visitors to stay away from some blue-green algae blooms that have popped up in the last week.

Pencil laying over an exam sheet.
Wikimedia Commons / WUSF Public Media

By Carrie Pinkard

The Florida Department of Education have released standardized test results for the tests taken this past spring.

The scores include the Florida Standards Assessments in English Language Arts and Math.

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