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State's new coronavirus deaths surge to 99, cases climb by 2,470

First-time positivity rates spike to 5.88% in state, 6,74% in Palm Beach County
Posted at 12:16 PM, Sep 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-23 00:55:07-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Florida's newly reported coronavirus deaths surged, but remained under triple digits, a U.S.-high 99, as cases rose to 2,470 and the state's infection positivity rate spiked above the 5 percent threshold and Palm Beach County went past 6 percent after two days of encouraging data from the weekend, the Florida Department of Health announced Tuesday.

Nationally, the death toll passed 200,000 on Tuesday morning with 200,005, according to tracking by Johns Hopkins.

The state's first-time daily cases rate increased from 4.31 percent of all tested to 5.88 after two-week low of 3.85 Sept. 13 with every day over 14 days under 6 percent, including a high of 5.92 percent on Sept. 8. Palm Beach County traditionally has a lower figure than the state but the rate more than doubled in one day from 3.07 percent to 6.74 percent, the highest in two weeks and much lower than 2.96 on Sept. 13. The county's rate has been under 4 percent 5 times over 14 days.

The state's total daily positivity rate for all tests increased to 7.55 percent on 44,908 tests – the third lowest tests in two weeks – from 6.12 on 43,191. The two-week low was 5.16 percent on Sept. 13 and the high was 8.13 percent on Sept. 8. The record test total was 142,964 July 11. In Palm Beach County there were 171 positive tests reported to the state Monday on 2,536 total tested.

Tuesday's death toll surged from weekend data, which is traditionally low. Nine deaths were reported Sunday and then 21 on Monday. Last Tuesday, the deaths rose by 145, then rose to 152 Wednesday, 147 Thursday, 139 Friday and down to 63 Saturday.

Since the first two deaths were announced on March 6, which is 200 days, the death toll has climbed to 13,416 among residents, with an average of 67 per day, and 1,579 including 163 nonresidents, which didn't change.

On Sept. 9, the death toll passed 12,000 to 12,115 and eight days later passed 13,000 on Thursday,

It took 49 days for Florida's death toll of residents to reach the first 1,000 yet it was only 40 days to more than double. Less than two months ago, July 20, there were 5,075 deaths.

Palm Beach County, after not reporting deaths for two days in a row, increased by 9 to 1,286, third highest in the state behind Miami-Dade and Broward. On the Treasure Coast, St. Lucie increase by 4 to 265, Indian River went up by 3 to 113 and Martin stayed at 132. Okeechobee is at 23 with its first two deaths on July 25.

Broward increased by 6 and Miami-Dade by 30 after two days of no fatalities.

In South Florida, there were 52 of the 98 deaths, which is 53 percent, for a total of 6,236 at 46.5 percent though the population only comprises 30 percent.

The last time deaths hit 200 was one week ago Thursday, Sept. 10 with 211 after 200 the previous day. Before that, the last 200-plus day was Aug. 18. The state record was 276 on Aug. 11.

Cases in Florida are much lower than three months ago.

On Monday cases rose by 1,685, which was the lowest since since 1,371 on June 10. Then, on June 15 they hit 1,758.

Sunday cases rose by 2,521 after Saturday's 3,573, Friday's 3,204, Thursday's 3,255, Wednesday's 2,355, Tuesday's 3,116.

The last time cases were above 4,000 was 4,684 on Aug. 22.

Palm Beach County's daily cases increased by 177 after 96 the day before and the previous low 100 two weeks ago.

Florida's new hospitalizations rose by 228 compared with 90 the day before. The state reported Monday there are currently 2,329 hospitalized with a primary diagnosis of COVID-19, which is 60 more than the day before.


Florida is in fifth place in the United States. On June 16, Florida was in 11th place in the nation.

Texas is in fourth place with the addition of 77 deaths Tuesday after a state-record 324 on Aug. 11, for a total of 14,944. California reported 53 new deaths and is in third place overall with 15,071, just 127 ahead of Texas.

State and county increases represent fatalities received by the state Monday and not the number of deaths that occurred then. The day someone dies and when it is received by the state can lag for several days. The most deaths the past month: 97 on Aug. 26.

In a state report Tuesday, 101 deaths were added from the last day's report and 2 removed after determining they weren't related to COVID-19.

Deaths rose by 629 in the state over seven days (a daily average of 90) for 4.9 percent, a figure tally that had been more than 1,200 deaths recently. Two months ago the one-week figure was in the mid 200s. Palm Beach County increased by 70 for 5.8 percent. The U.S. figure is 2.5 percent with the world at 3.8 percent.

Miami-Dade rose to 3,085, which is 162 more in one week. Broward increased to 1,328 with a rise of 40 in one week. St. Lucie has risen by 13 deaths in one week compared with Martin by 3, Indian River by 6 and Okeechobee by 2.

Palm Beach County's death count is higher than 22 states, including Wisconsin's 1,251 after adding 7 Tuesday. Iowa is tied at 1,286, including 7 more.

Pinellas increased by 1 to 729 deaths in fourth place and Hillsborough went up by 1 to 605 in fifth place. Polk rose by 5 to 512 in sixth and Lee increased by to 460.

On Tuesday, the state identified 9 new deaths: 7 men (62, 65, 80, 84, 86, 88, 94) and 2 women (73, 82). St. Lucie reported the deaths of 3 men (73, 81, 83, 90) with Indian River adding 2 women (85, 88) and an 81-year-old man.


Since the first two cases were announced on March 1, Florida's total has surged to 3.2 percent of the state's 21.48 million population with 687,909, third in the nation. The average since March is 3,356 per day.

In one week, cases have risen by 19,063, which averages 2,723 per day, at 2.9 percent.

Cases passed 600,000 Aug. 23 and 500,000 on Aug. 5.

California has the most cases in the U.S. at 784,324 with the addition of a U.S.-high 2,630 Tuesday. Texas had a U.S.-high 3,964 as well as 13,854 older cases for second overall with 716,207. New York, which was the leader during much of the pandemic, is in fourth at 451,227 with 484 more.

Florida's daily case increases have been below 10,000 since July 26 when they climbed by 12,199. Early in the pandemic, cases were under 1,000 with the last one of three digits 966 on June 8.

The cases record was 15,300 was July 5 – the highest daily figure ever in the United States.

In Palm Beach County, new cases have been much lower since the record 1,171 July 5. The total now is 45,602, including residents and nonresidents.

Miami-Dade's cases were 362 compared with 272 and Broward's increase was 143 vs. 119. In the Treasure Coast area, the rise over one day was 21 in Martin, 20 in St. Lucie, 12 in Indian River, 25 in Okeechobee.


Florida's total number of people tested is 5,139,472, fourth in the nation, behind No. 1 California, No. 2 New York and No. 3 Texas. That Florida figure is 23.9 percent of Florida's population. Recent past reported incorrectly reported New York was first and California second.

The overall Florida positive rate decreased to 13.38 percent from 13.39 the day before.

In Palm Beach County, the last time the first-time rate has been above 10.0 percent was 10.2 percent on Aug. 4.

Miami-Dade's rate rose to 5.56 percent after 11 days in a row under the 5 percent threshold compared with 3.67 the day before, a two-week low of 3.58 four days ago and a two-week high 6.26 on Sept. 8. The rate hit 26.4 on July 8. Broward's rate has been less than 4 percent for two weeks, including most recently 3.62 one day after 2.39, a two-week low of 2.34 on Sept. 13 and a high of 3.80 seven days ago.

Elsewhere, St. Lucie's rate increased to 4.58 percent from 3.50, a two-week low of 2.4 on Sept. 12 and a two-week high of 7.23 seven days ago. Martin's rate was 7.96 percent from 7.6, a two-week low of 1.59 six days ago and a high of 9.84 three days ago. Indian River's rate was a two-week high of 5.94, one day after 4.56, a two-week low of 2.09 on Sept. 11, which was among three days under 3 percent. Okeechobee's rate soars to 36.23 percent on 44 after 9.327 percent on 107 negative tests and a low of 6.12 on 46 negative tests on Sept. 12.

Palm Beach County has 45,602 cases out of 358,110 total tested for 12.73 percent overall, not including those awaiting tests and inconclusive.

Miami-Dade leads with 167,373 positive cases out of 893,373 tested for 13.75 percent, and Broward is second with 75,944 cases and 553,963 tested for 13.71 percentage.

In Martin County, it's 4,780 of 34,500 for 13.86 percent. In St. Lucie, it's 7,846 out of 59,530 for 13.18 percent, Indian River with 3,111 of 34,726 for 8.96 percent and Okeechobee 1,489 of 10,836 for 13.74 percent.

Mortality rate

The mortality rate compares positive cases against deaths.

The state's rate increased to 2.0 percent for all deaths and cases, including nonresidents, compared with 2.9 percent in the United States and 3.1 percent worldwide, which neared 975,000 deaths and neared 31.84 million cases Tuesday, according to

Palm Beach County's rate was 2.8 percent, compared with Broward at 1.8 percent and Miami-Dade with 1.9 percent. With much fewer deaths, the mortality rate is 3.4 percent in St. Lucie, 2.8 percent in Martin, 3.7 percent in Indian River and 1.5 percent in Okeechobee.

Florida has 625 deaths per 1 million people compared with the U.S. average of 620 per million. New York, which represents 16.5 percent of the deaths in the nation, has 1,706 per million. Worldwide, the figure is 125.1 per million.

Age breakdown

The median age for all deaths in Florida is 79.

Four deaths are among youths 14 and under: a 6-year-old from Hillsborough, a 9-year-year old from Putnam and two 11-year-olds, a boy in Miami-Dade and a girl in Broward. This class did not change.

Four other juveniles are among the 31 deaths in the 15-24 class, including a 16-year-old girl in Miami-Dade, a 16-year-old girl in Lee, a 17-year-old boy in Pasco and a 17-year-old boy in Manatee. This class didn't have any additions.

Eighty-nine people from 25 to 34 also have died from the virus, which went down by 1.

A total of 4,342 people 85 and older have died in the state from the virus, an increase of 34 in one day.

Ninety-three percent of the fatalities are 55 and older and 61 percent are 75 and older. A smaller percentage of older people have tested positive – 28 percent age 55 and older and 7 percent 75 and older.

At the other end of the age spectrum, there are 11,628 cases of infants to 4 years old, an increase of 44, and 272 were hospitalized, which went up by 1. From ages 5-14, there are 28,603 28,491, an increase of 112 with 247in the hospital at one time, with 2 more.

From the infant to 54 age group, there are 489,560 of the 679,776 residents' cases. In that group, 903 have died, with an increase of 5, for a 0.18 death percentage. From infant to 64, there are 577,973 cases. A total of 2,358 have died, an increase of 18, for a 0.41 percentage.


West Palm Beach is in first place among Palm Beach County cities with 11,217, with an increase of 37. Lake Worth, which includes the city and county portion, rose by 28 to 7,795 followed by Boca Raton at 6,563 up from 6,524, Boynton Beach at 4,039 from 4,025 and Delray Beach at 3,107 vs. 3,094. A total of 1,040 in the county not designated by a city. In addition, the list of cities includes separate listings of misspellings and miscoded counties.

Port St. Lucie leads the Treasure Coast with 4,630, an increase of 16, followed by Fort Pierce at 2,762, up 4, and Stuart with 2,227, which increased by 5.

In Indian River County, Fellsmere, which has a population of 5,754, went down by 1 to 410 compared with only 3 on May 31.


A total of 42,771 people in the state have been hospitalized, a rise from 41,654 seven days ago. That means it is a running total and includes people who have been released or died.

The number is 3,578 in Palm Beach County, with an increase of 16 compared with 10 the day before; 386 in Martin, which didn't change; 645 in St. Lucie with an increase of 4, Indian River remained at 290 and Okeechobee went from 163 to 164.

Long-term care

Forty-one percent of the deaths, 5,503 are residents and staff of long-term care, including 558 in Palm Beach County, which is second most in the state behind 778 in Miami-Dade. The state increase was 44 and Palm Beach County went up by 4.


Since the first death was reported six months ago on Feb. 29, the toll has risen to 200,768, a gain of 903, according to Johns Hopkins. Worldometers reported an increase of 969 to 205,471.

Cases reached 6,895,685 with an increase of 38,801. They have exceeded 70,000 seven times, including a record 78,446 on July 24 and the last time was July 31.

Last Tuesday in the U.S., there were 1,288 more deaths and 38,690 cases.

The one week U.S. death increase was 4,981 at 2.5 percent.

New York has the most deaths in the nation at 33,090 with a decrease of 2 reported Tuesday, after a high of 799 in April.

Among other states in the top 10 for deaths: No. 2 New Jersey 4, No. 6 Massachusetts 11, No. 7 Illinois 29, No. 8 Pennsylvania 20, No. 9 Michigan 16, No. 10 Georgia 73.

Also, No. 11 Arizona reported 20 deaths, as well as an additional 595 cases. No. 23 Washington, the original epicenter in the United States, reported 4.


The U.S. represented 16.9 percent of the 5,721 additional deaths Tuesday and 21.1 percent of the world total though its population is only 4.3 percent of the global total. The one week world death increase was 36,041 at 3.8percent.

Last Tuesday's death increase was 6,000.

Cases increased by 276,367 after a record 315,101 Friday, according to

Brazil, which is second behind the United States for deaths, reported 809 deaths to rise to 138,159. Brazil's record is 1,554 on July 29. The nation added 35,252 cases at 4,595,335 in third place.

India reported 75,083 cases after a world-record 97,894 four days before to rise to 5,562,664, which is second in world behind U.S. India also recorded a world-high 1,053 deaths, six days after a national-record 1,299, to rise to 88,935 and in third place.

Mexico announced 651 more deaths late Tuesday compared with a high of 1,092 on June 4 for a total of 74,348 in fourth place.

Four European nations are in the top 11 as cases are surging on the continent. The United Kingdom reported 37 additional deaths for 41,825 in fifth place with the record daily high 1,172, as well as 4,926 cases, which was the highest since 5,086 on May 7. No. 6 Italy, which at one time was the world's epicenter and reached 919 in one day, reported 14 deaths. No. 8 France announced 78 deaths, as well as 10,008 cases three days after record 13,498. No. 9 Spain reported 241 deaths, which is the highest since 244 on May 6, and a record 10,799 cases.

No. 7 Peru announced 112 deaths and is 170 ahead of France. No. 10 Iran reported 178 deaths.

Russia is in fourth place in the world in cases with 1,115,810, including an additional 6,215. The nation gained 160 deaths and is in 12th.

No. 20 Canada reported 6 deaths for a total of 9,234 and 1,248 cases.

Sweden, which has been doing "herd immunity" with no lockdown, reported 5 deaths and is at 5,870. Neighboring Norway reported no deaths for the fourth day in a row to remain 267, as well as 148 more cases.

No. 30 China, the original epicenter of the world, hasn’t reported a death since April 26, and added 10 cases Wednesday.