The Phoenix Flyer

CDC data: Rising COVID cases in FL top almost every state, even as vaccinations continue

By: - July 12, 2021 1:01 pm

Novel coronavirus SARS CoV2, which causes COVID-19. Meanwhile, new COVID mutations called variants have spread across the U.S., including the newer Omicron variant. Microphotography by National Institute on Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

While states such as Missouri have been in the news over a surge of COVID-19 cases, Florida too is seeing a spike in cases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The newest key indicators from the CDC show that Florida has the highest number of new COVID cases, 5,790, in the United States and all territories. Florida also has the highest number of cases in the USA and all territories over a 7-day period — 23,747 cases.

Based on the 7-day case rate per 100,000, Florida ranks 3rd, at a rate of 110.6 — more than three times the nationwide average, which is a rate of 37.4.

Missouri has the highest 7-day rate, of 165.4, and the second highest, Arkansas, has 161.7. Louisiana and Nevada also are above a rate of 100.

The number of cases and the rates of COVID-19 cases can be of concern in several areas, such as when schools open in the fall and not all children will be vaccinated.

The CDC last week provided new guidance on mask-wearing, saying fully vaccinated teachers, students and staff would not need to wear masks this fall. But more than a million students younger than 12 will not be vaccinated in the fall and a contagious variant called Delta has been surging in many parts of the country, including in Florida.

Also last week, Florida Senate Democrats wrote a letter to Gov. Ron DeSantis, saying:

“As Florida joins other states eyeing a surging number of cases of the dangerous and fast-spreading COVID ‘Delta’ variant, we, the undersigned members of the Senate Democratic Caucus, are urging you to join with your fellow Republican governors who are tapping the power of their office to strongly urge reluctant residents to get vaccinated…

“With the Delta variant now threatening both lives and livelihoods, and the infection rate rising once again, more than just a passing suggestion to vaccinate is urgently needed – especially as close to 50% of Floridians remain wholly unvaccinated. As governor of this nation’s third largest state, it is incumbent on you to break through that reluctance and close the vulnerability gap with urgency and action.”

In Florida, 47 percent of residents have been fully vaccinated. That’s about in the middle of the states and territories that have full vaccinated their residents, the CDC data shows.

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Diane Rado
Diane Rado

Diane Rado has covered state and local government and public schools in six states over some 30 years, focusing on policy and investigative stories as well as legislative and political reporting. She spent most of her career at the St. Petersburg (Tampa Bay) Times and the Chicago Tribune. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and did a fellowship in education reform at the University of Michigan in 1999-2000. She is married to a journalist and has three adult children.