Latest on COVID-19 in January
Home Updates for the Week Bulletin Board News Around Lynnhaven Lost & Found Special Requests The Marketplace Rentals Lynnhaven Neighbors Lynnhaven Ladies Ladies Book Club Useful Information Useful Internet Links Crime Watch You and Your Computer Residents Recommend Contributors

Home
Updates for the Week
Bulletin Board
News Around Lynnhaven
Lost & Found
Special Requests
The Marketplace
Rentals
Lynnhaven Neighbors
Lynnhaven Ladies
Ladies Book Club
Useful Information
Useful Internet Links
Crime Watch
You and Your Computer
Residents Recommend
Contributors

Contact Webmaster
(Right click on Webmaster link to get email address)
to:

Include an announcement, group activity, or feature article

Report broken links or to correct information

Report your changed
e-mail address or phone #


The Latest on the Coronavirus — January

Click on a link (always blue & underlined) to go to that spot on the website, another website, or get an email address.
Click on the Back button (top of screen) to return to this web page.

Latest on COVID-19 in January

1/29/2021:
     Johnson & Johnson Vaccine
     New Covid Variants Detected, Upgrading Your Mask

     This Week's Statistics

          Florida Department of Health's dashboard

          Florida's COVID-19 Action dashboard

1/22/2021:
     Rebekah Jones Turns Herself in After Arrest Warrant Issued
     F
irst Major Mutation of the Virus
     Second Generation Vaccines Are Coming
     Vaccine Doses Spoiled by Temperature Problems
     Vaccinations in The Villages Abruptly Cancelled
    
Treating COVID-19 Symptoms at Home
     This Week's Statistics

          Florida Department of Health's dashboard

          Florida's COVID-19 Action dashboard

1/15/2021:
     Getting Vaccinated
     C
an grandparents safely visit family if vaccinated?
    
How to Act After a Single Dose of the Covid-19 Vaccine
     This Week's Statistics

          Florida Department of Health's dashboard

          Florida's COVID-19 Action dashboard

1/8/2021:
     59% of Virus Cases from People Without Symptoms
     Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine Not Easy
     Allergic Reaction to COVID-19 Vaccine
    
Record Spike of 19,816 Cases from Wednesday to Thursday
     This Week's Statistics

          Florida Department of Health's dashboard

          Florida's COVID-19 Action dashboard

1/1/2021:
     Villagers Frustrated Trying to Get Vaccinated
     Nurse Tested Positive After First Dose of Vaccine
     Testing COVID-19 Vaccines on Children
    
CDC Guidance if You Have a Pre-existing Condition
     FL Ends Year with its Biggest Spike in Cases
     This Week's Statistics
           
Florida Department of Health's dashboard
           
Florida's COVID-19 Action dashboard


Friday, January 2
9th

  • Today's good news! A third vaccine from Johnson & Johnson is on the horizon. The finding of a massive global trial shows that its COVID-19 vaccine is 66% effective at preventing severe or moderate illness, hospitalizations and deaths, increasing to 85% after a month. And, it only requires one shot, does not require extreme sub-zero temperatures to keep it viable, is cheaper to produce, and immunity increases over time, which could simplify distribution and expand access here and worldwide. Its protection against sickness was stronger in the US (72%) and weaker in South Africa, where a worrisome variant now dominates, but J & J will be working on a booster shot for that strain. (On TV tonight, two more advantages were mentioned — No deaths and No hospitalizations were added to the vaccine's advantages.)
     
  • With the rapid spread of the new very contagious COVID variants, safety measures become even more important. The B.1.1.7 variant in the UK has now spread to two dozen states so far. On Thursday, South Carolina officials disclosed the first two cases of the South African strain in the US. On Monday, Minnesota officials announced that they have detected the P.1 strain that has been spreading in Brazil, overwhelming their hospitals again. All these variant strains are much more contagious than the original strain. Experts have increasingly started recommending an upgrade: wearing two masks, one on top of the other, or even a fabric mask on top of a high-quality KN95 or N95 mask. But the CDC hasn't revised its own recommendation about how many masks to wear yet. They still recommend using a well-fitted face covering with at least two layers of washable, breathable fabric, which doesn't allow air gaps.
     
  • I am showing statistics from both dashboards/data portals: Florida's Dept. of Health (DOH) statistics and Florida's COVID Action statistics (both developed by Rebekah Jones). (Click on images to enlarge them.)  The statistics between the two continues to be quite different.
     
    Per the Florida Department of Health's dashboard* as of Friday, January 29th, cumulatively the state now has 1,667,442 residents testing positive for COVID-19, with 71,864 hospitalized, and 26,254 deaths.** 75,179 residents have been tested, with 14.46% testing positive (4.32% increase). The breakdown of confirmed cases in our tri-county area is:
    • Sumter County: 6,997 cases (6,923 residents, 74 non-residents), 438 hospitalizations, with 186 deaths (median age now: 65, with 51% males, 47% females)
        
    • Lake County: 21,511 cases (21,217 residents, 294 non-residents), 1,126 hospitalizations (21 non-residents), with 424 deaths (median age holding at: 45, with 44% males, 53% females)
        
    • Marion County: 24,178 cases (24,077 residents, 101 non-residents), 1,534 hospitalizations (7 non-residents), with 574 deaths (median age holding at: 45, with 43% males, 57% females)

    * The new data includes the number of test results the department receives from the counties, along with additional demographics and graphs that show hospital admissions for patients complaining of cough, fever or shortness of breath. Previously, that data was only provided for larger counties. Still not included is how many infected people have recovered from the virus and, unlike other states, Florida does not report "probable" deaths from the virus.
     

    *
    * The newest reported deaths are the latest logged into the DOH system, and that process could take as long as two weeks or longer before they show up.


     

    Per the Florida's COVID Action dashboard as of Friday, January 29th, the state now has 1,793,911 residents testing positive (10,976 cases today, 71,347 cases this past week); with 6,573 requiring hospitalization; and 26,685 deaths (229 deaths today, 1,280 deaths this past week). 43,430 residents have been tested today, with a 67.17% positivity rate. So far, 1,605,995 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 273,249 having both doses. The breakdown of confirmed cases in our tri-county area is:
    • Sumter County: 7,260 cases since March 1st (64 cases today, 357 this week), 44 current hospitalizations, and 186 deaths (0 deaths today, 16 this week), 290 residents have been tested today, with a 65.3% positivity rate (an increase of 28.0%). So far, 16,344 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 692 having both doses.
        
    • Lake County: 22,277 cases since March 1st (168 cases today, 1,208 this week), 154 current hospitalizations, and 431 deaths (38 deaths today, 34 this week), 979 residents have been tested today, with a 38.5% positivity rate (an increase of 27.7%). So far, 34,897 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 6,566 having both doses.
        
    • Marion County: 24,654 cases since March 1st (166 cases today, 1,129 this week), 106 current hospitalizations, and 578 deaths (0 deaths today, 15 this week), 773 residents have been tested today, with a 54.2% positivity rate (an increase of 7.5%). So far, 21,650 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 1,636 having both doses.

    None of these counties meet the criteria for the next phase of reopening, but are open all the same.


Friday, January 22nd

  • Rebekah Jones, the ex-Florida data scientist whose home was raided after she accused the state of manipulating COVID-19 data and was fired, turned herself in to authorities on Sunday night and was released on a $2,500 bond Monday. According to the affidavit, a forensic analysis of Jones' computer revealed it was responsible for two unauthorized accesses of state data. Jones has maintained her innocence, and is suing the FDLE for "terrorizing" her family and violating her First, Fourth, and Fourteenth Amendment rights. "FDLE found no evidence of a message sent last November to DOH staff telling them to 'speak out' on any of the devices they took (the reason her home was raided) … However, police did find documents I received/downloaded from sources in the state, or something of that nature,” Jones said on Twitter Saturday. Jones just tested positive for COVID-19 while in jail. An investigation of the raid and an accusation of abuse of power by Ron DeSantis has been called for.
     
  • The first major mutation of the virus, which took hold last spring, quickly became the dominant strain across the globe. Then for a while, things were quiet on the mutation front. But in the past several months, we've seen at least three new strains emerge. It indicates more are likely to come, researchers told the Associated Press. Viruses are going to mutate. That's kind of their thing. Some of them evolve very quickly into increasingly more transmissible forms. The only way to slow down that process is to reduce the number of infections by wearing masks, keeping our distance and washing our hands a lot. The basic guidelines are going to help prevent you from getting sick by one of these variants, and they're also going to make it harder for the virus to mutate in the first place.
     
  • The Moderna and Pfizer vaccines have logistical issues that prevent them from being easily deployed globally, but there are hundreds of other COVID vaccines under development that could prove to be effective, cheaper, and easier to distribute. As long as vaccines are fragile, expensive and difficult to distribute, the pandemic will continue. The good news is that "second generation" vaccines are being developed. Three showing the most potential are discussed.
     
  • More than 16,000 vaccine doses have potentially been spoiled by temperature problems, either not kept cold enough or being too cold, in Maine and Michigan. Temperature control issues during shipping of the Moderna vaccine have prompted separate investigations by the CDC, Moderna, and a distributor to determine exactly how and why the vials were ruined. This is the first report of vaccine potentially being compromised during shipment, but the safeguards put in place to ensure the integrity of the vaccine worked.
     
  • Villages-News.com reported that appointments for 7,500 people eagerly awaiting COVID-19 vaccinations in The Villages have been postponed due to a failed shipment of the vaccine. A "national shortage" is being blamed. Days after Gov. Ron DeSantis came to tout a new COVID-19 vaccination clinic set up in The Villages, the lack of available vaccine has temporarily pulled the plug on the operation. It is not known when the vaccine shipment might arrive. DeSantis spoke at a makeshift drive-through vaccination site in an empty field behind Red Lobster at Buffalo Ridge Plaza. DeSantis also touted the fact that Florida didn’t follow initial guidelines put out by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding vaccinations. Residents continue to be disappointed and frustrated that they haven't been able to be vaccinated, even with an appointment.
     
  • Most COVID-19 cases can be managed at home. Most of the cases are mild or moderate and fewer COVID-19 cases are requiring hospitalization. Being prepared will also help you recover faster. Here are a few basic guidelines on how to treat and manage your COVID symptoms at home. Learn what you need to do and have on hand, how to protect others in your home, staying hydrated, managing respiratory symptoms, medications that might be prescribed by your doctor, eating healthy foods that can boost your immunity, dealing with loss of appetite, keeping track of your symptoms and noting unusual or worsening symptoms. Health Matters also provides 8 tips to help you recover faster.
     
  • I am showing statistics from both dashboards/data portals: Florida's Dept. of Health (DOH) statistics and Florida's COVID Action statistics (both developed by Rebekah Jones). (Click on images to enlarge them.)  The statistics between the two continues to be quite different.
     
    Per the Florida Department of Health's dashboard* as of Friday, January 22nd, cumulatively the state now has 1,597,849 residents testing positive for COVID-19, with 69,735 hospitalized, and 25,011 deaths.** 108,592 residents have been tested, with 10.14% testing positive (2.23% increase). The breakdown of confirmed cases in our tri-county area is:
    • Sumter County: 6,646 cases (6,582 residents, 64 non-residents), 433 hospitalizations, with 170 deaths (median age holding at: 64, with 52% males, 47% females)
        
    • Lake County: 20,296 cases (20,028 residents, 268 non-residents), 1,087 hospitalizations (21 non-residents), with 392 deaths (median age holding at: 45, now 44% males, 53% females)
        
    • Marion County: 23,050 cases (22,965 residents, 85 non-residents), 1,489 hospitalizations (6 non-residents), with 560 deaths (median age holding at: 45, with 43% males, 57% females)

    * The new data includes the number of test results the department receives from the counties, along with additional demographics and graphs that show hospital admissions for patients complaining of cough, fever or shortness of breath. Previously, that data was only provided for larger counties. Still not included is how many infected people have recovered from the virus and, unlike other states, Florida does not report "probable" deaths from the virus.
     

    *
    * The newest reported deaths are the latest logged into the DOH system, and that process could take as long as two weeks or longer before they show up.


     

    Per the Florida's COVID Action dashboard as of Friday, January 22nd, the state now has 1,722,944 residents testing positive (13,719 cases today, 79,728 cases this past week); with 6,910 requiring hospitalization; and 25,405 deaths (277 deaths today, 1,236 deaths this past week). 43,446 residents have been tested today, with a 37.3% positivity rate. So far, 849,317 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 79,552 having both doses. The breakdown of confirmed cases in our tri-county area is:
    • Sumter County: 6,909 cases since March 1st (41 cases today, 388 this week), 65 current hospitalizations, and 170 deaths (0 deaths today, 388 this week). 611 residents have been tested today, with a 51.2% positivity rate (an increase of 34.5%). So far, 11,900 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 281 having both doses.
        
    • Lake County: 21,062 cases since March 1st (168 cases today, 1,333 this week), 145 current hospitalizations, and 397 deaths (1 death today, 43 this week). 480 residents have been tested today, with a 36.4% positivity rate (an increase of 10.8%). So far, 29,043 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 1,929 having both doses.
        
    • Marion County: 23,526 cases since March 1st (374 cases today, 1,750 this week), 142 current hospitalizations, and 532 deaths (203 deaths today, 1,264 this week). 1,014 residents have been tested today, with a 46.7% positivity rate (an increase of 7.9%). So far, 21,650 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 1,636 having both doses.

    None of these counties meet the criteria for the next phase of reopening, but are open all the same.


Friday, January
15th

  • If vaccinated, can grandparents safely visit family or are there still precautions that should be taken?  Dr. Leana Wen reminds us that the vaccine is not 100% effective, so we can still get the virus. Also, the vaccine hasn't been shown to reduce transmission of the virus, so even if you are vaccinated, you can still be a carrier and spread the virus to unvaccinated loved ones. You can safely visit outside, but should still stay six feet apart. If visiting indoors, you still need to protect unvaccinated family members. If you really want to spend time with the grandkids indoors, the safest way is to quarantine for at least 10 days, and it's still best for everyone to wear masks. If having a meal together, don't share plates or food on plates, don't have buffet-style meals, and eat outdoors if you can. Continue to social distance and wear masks, and know that you still have some risk of both getting the virus or spreading it.
     
  • How should we behave after receiving a single dose of the Covid-19 vaccine? After one dose, you should follow the same guidelines as if you hadn't received the vaccine at all. First, you're not fully protected and there's no evidence that you won't get the virus or pass it on to others. Effectiveness of the vaccines was assessed by looking at whether they prevented people from developing symptoms, not whether they stopped them from being infected. Immunity takes time to develop, so regardless of whether a single dose of any of the Covid-19 vaccines can provide protection eventually, for the first couple of weeks you will have no more than you started with.
     
  • I am showing statistics from both dashboards/data portals: Florida's Dept. of Health (DOH) statistics and Florida's COVID Action statistics (both developed by Rebekah Jones). (Click on images to enlarge them.)  The statistics between the two continues to be quite different.
    Per the Florida Department of Health's dashboard* as of Friday, January 15th, cumulatively the state now has 1,519,944 residents testing positive for COVID-19, with 67,463 hospitalized, and 23,799 deaths.** 163,164 residents have been tested, with 10.14% testing positive. The breakdown of confirmed cases in our tri-county area is:
    • Sumter County: 6,265 cases (6,205 residents, 60 non-residents), 421 hospitalizations, with 126 deaths (median age holding at: 64, but now 52% males, 47% females)
        
    • Lake County: 18,962 cases (18,724 residents, 238 non-residents), 1,057 hospitalizations (20 non-residents), with 349 deaths (median age holding at: 45, with 45% males, 53% females)
        
    • Marion County: 21,788 cases (21,704 residents, 84 non-residents), 1,435 hospitalizations (6 non-residents), with 529 deaths (median age holding at: 45, with 43% males, 57% females)

    * The new data includes the number of test results the department receives from the counties, along with additional demographics and graphs that show hospital admissions for patients complaining of cough, fever or shortness of breath. Previously, that data was only provided for larger counties. Still not included is how many infected people have recovered from the virus and, unlike other states, Florida does not report "probable" deaths from the virus.
     

    *
    * The newest reported deaths are the latest logged into the DOH system, and that process could take as long as two weeks or longer before they show up.

     

    Per the Florida's COVID Action dashboard as of Friday, January 15th, the state now has 1,643,408 residents testing positive (16,875 cases today, 99,553 cases this past week); with 6,368 requiring hospitalization; and 24,169 deaths (188 deaths today, 1,158 deaths this past week). 56,682 residents have been tested today, with a 37.3% positivity rate. So far, 849,317 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 79,552 having both doses. The breakdown of confirmed cases in our tri-county area is:

    • Sumter County: 6,528 cases since March 1st (51 cases today, 448 this week), 76 current hospitalizations, and 126 deaths (1 death today, 4 this week). 305 residents have been tested today, with a 16.7% positivity rate. So far, 6,274 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 137 having both doses.
        
    • Lake County: 19,728 cases since March 1st (209 cases today, 1,504 this week), 165 current hospitalizations, and 354 deaths (10 deaths today, 18 this week). 815 residents have been tested today, with a 25.6% positivity rate. So far, 19,649 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 1,236 having both doses.
        
    • Marion County: 22,264 cases since March 1st (374 cases today, 1,750 this week), 142 current hospitalizations, and 532 deaths (4 deaths today, 32 this week). 964 residents have been tested today, with a 38.8% positivity rate. So far, 13,953 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 615 having both doses.

    None of these counties meet the criteria for the next phase of reopening, but are open all the same.


Friday, January
8th

  • People with no symptoms transmit more than half of all cases of the novel coronavirus, according to a model developed by researchers at the CDC — 59% of all transmission came from people without symptoms — that includes 35% of new cases from people who infect others before they show symptoms and 24% that come from people who never develop symptoms at all. Their findings reinforce the importance of following the agency’s guidelines: even if you don't feel ill, wear a mask, wash your hands, stay socially distant and get a coronavirus test. Until people believe it and do their part, we'll be stuck in this limbo and repeating the cycle until most everyone is vaccinated, or... a large portion of our population is gone... forever.
     
  • Across the state, residents hoping to schedule a vaccination have hit busy signals or glitchy recordings. Some residents have called their county departments of health dozens or hundreds of times with no luck. In essentially every county, the issue can partly be attributed to overwhelming demand in the face of little supply. For example, some 250,000 elderly residents live in Pinellas County,  which got just 3,000 doses of coronavirus vaccines this week. The city of Jacksonville is ready to open its own city-run COVID-19 vaccination sites but is waiting for shipments of the vaccines in sufficient numbers to make the shots available. Publix is participating in a pilot program, with the Florida Department of Health giving the supermarket 15,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine to administer at 22 select stores in Citrus, Hernando, and Marion counties. They ran out within five minutes. There is no statewide system for people to make appointments so each county-level health department is left to figure it out for themselves. St. Johns County's health department experienced long lines when it used a first-come, first-served system.
     
  • Allergic reactions to the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine appear to be rare, but there have been some serious reactions. Wednesday, the CDC released its report on allergic reactions to the vaccine given from December 14th — 23rd. The Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) detected 21 cases of anaphylaxis after administration of a reported 1,893,360 first doses, with 71% of them occurring within 15 minutes of vaccination, with 175 cases identified for further review, including 17 people with a documented history of allergies or allergic reactions. The median age of persons with anaphylaxis was 40 years and 19 (90%) cases occurred in females. Because of these possible reactions, the CDC recommends screening for a history of serious allergic reactions before administering COVID-19 vaccines, there should be an observation period after the vaccine is administered, and that vaccine locations have the necessary supplies to manage anaphylaxis, and should immediately treat persons experiencing anaphylaxis symptoms with an intramuscular injection of epinephrine.
     
  • The Sunshine State reported another record day in the number of new cases of the deadly virus. All told, Florida reported 1,429,722 cumulative cases — an increase of 19,816 from Wednesday to Thursday. That marks the largest single-day increase in new cases since the pandemic first hit Florida in the spring. On Thursday, a total of 191 new COVID-19 cases were reported in and around The Villages for a total of 9,998.
     
  • I am showing statistics from both dashboards/data portals: Florida's Dept. of Health (DOH) statistics and Florida's COVID Action statistics (both developed by Rebekah Jones). (Click on images to enlarge them.)  The statistics between the two continues to be quite different.
     
    Per the Florida Department of Health's dashboard* as of Friday, January 8th, cumulatively the state now has 1,423,252,510 residents testing positive for COVID-19, with 65,063 hospitalized, and 22,666 deaths.** The breakdown of confirmed cases in our tri-county area is:
    • Sumter County: 5,829 cases (5,776 residents, 53 non-residents), 393 hospitalizations, with 122 deaths (median age now: 64, now 53% males, 46% females)
        
    • Lake County: 17,489 cases (17,281 residents, 218 non-residents), 1,012 hospitalizations (18 non-residents), with 331 deaths (median age holding at: 45, now 45% males, 53% females)
        
    • Marion County: 20,040 cases (19,960 residents, 80 non-residents), 1,388 hospitalizations (6 non-residents), with 498 deaths (median age now: 45, with 43% males, 57% females)

    * The new data includes the number of test results the department receives from the counties, along with additional demographics and graphs that show hospital admissions for patients complaining of cough, fever or shortness of breath. Previously, that data was only provided for larger counties. Still not included is how many infected people have recovered from the virus and, unlike other states, Florida does not report "probable" deaths from the virus.
     

    *
    * The newest reported deaths are the latest logged into the DOH system, and that process could take as long as two weeks or longer before they show up.


     

    Per the Florida's COVID Action dashboard as of Friday, January 8th, the state now has 1,544,593 residents testing positive (19,530 cases today, 105,273 cases this past week); with 6,368 requiring hospitalization; and 23,011 deaths (194 deaths today, 1,021 deaths this past week). So far, 443,616 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 24,200 having both doses. The breakdown of confirmed cases in our tri-county area is:

    • Sumter County: 6,092 cases since March 1st (109 cases today, 584 this week), 125 K-12 cases (93 students/32 staff), 73 current hospitalizations, and 120 deaths (0 deaths today, 2 this week). So far, 1,483 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 9 having both doses.
        
    • Lake County: 18,255 cases since March 1st (261 cases today, 1,587 this week), 570 K-12 cases (400 students/170 staff), 161 current hospitalizations, and 336 deaths (0 deaths today, 37 this week). So far, 9,404 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 192 having both doses.
        
    • Marion County: 20,516 cases since March 1st (455 cases today, 1,766 this week), 634 K-12 cases (417 students/217 staff), 131 current hospitalizations, and 500 deaths (2 deaths today, 35 this week). So far, 4,668 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine, with 55 having both doses.

    None of these counties meet the criteria for the next phase of reopening, but are open all the same.

 

Friday, January 1st

  • As the number of COVID-19 cases soars, Villagers and others around the state are frustrated as they try to secure a spot in line to be vaccinated. The Sumter County Health Department said it has received 2,500 doses of the Moderna vaccine, not nearly enough to vaccinate its 30,000+ residents. Each county is dispensing the vaccine differently. We've all seen the long lines where the vaccine is dispensed on a first come, first serve basis on news broadcasts. The decision to greenlight Covid-19 inoculations for senior citizens in Florida has created distribution chaos, spurring long lines at vaccination sites and a deluge of people crashing county computer systems and hospital phone banks to schedule their shots.
     
  • The story of an emergency room nurse who tested positive for COVID-19 after getting the first dose of the vaccine is a reminder that hand washing, social distancing, and masks are still going to be crucial in 2021. Dr. Christian Ramers, an infectious disease specialist with Family Health Centers of San Diego, told KGTV that patients don't immediately develop COVID-19 protection after being vaccinated... a reminder that vaccines aren't a panacea. It takes 10 — 14 days to start developing protection from the vaccine, and you need the second shot to develop 95% immunity.
     
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci says drug companies may start testing their vaccines on children this month. It can be tricky to dial in the right dose of a vaccine for children, which have shown a different reaction to the coronavirus than adults. Fauci says the trials will "start with children who are a bit older and then work our way down. We believe that within a few months, what I know we will be able to say, 'the vaccine is safe and effective in you and we are anxious to get you vaccinated.' So just hang in there a couple of more months and we will be in good shape."
     
  • The CDC released guidance on COVID-19 vaccinations for people who have pre-existing conditions, saying information about the safety of the vaccine to those with HIV or weakened immune systems is still not available. They also should be aware that there may be the potential for reduced immune responses to the vaccine. People who have had Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) and Bell’s Palsy may get the vaccine. So far, no cases of GBS have been reported after vaccinations.
     
  • Florida ends the year with the biggest spike in COVID-19 cases since the pandemic first hit the state. All told, the state is reporting 1,323,315 cases — an increase of 17,192 in one day. Of those, 1,300,528 are residents. See the graphs below showing the spikes in our tri-county area. "The number we’re getting now is probably an underestimate of the disease," said Dr. Marissa Levine, a professor of public health and family medicine at the University of South Florida. Some cases may never be counted by state officials because testing just isn't widespread enough.
     
  • I am showing statistics from both dashboards/data portals: Florida's Dept. of Health (DOH) statistics and Florida's COVID Action statistics (both developed by Rebekah Jones). (Click on images to enlarge them.)  The statistics between the two continues to be quite different.
     
    Per the Florida Department of Health's dashboard* as of Friday, January 1st, cumulatively the state now has 1,300,528 residents testing positive for COVID-19, with 62,868 hospitalized, and 21,673 deaths.** The breakdown of confirmed cases in our tri-county area is:
    • Sumter County: 5,085 cases (5,051 residents, 317 non-residents), 378 hospitalizations, with 120 deaths (median age now: 63, now 53% males, 46% females)
        
    • Lake County: 15,559 cases (15,374 residents, 185 non-residents), 977 hospitalizations (18 non-residents), with 295 deaths (median age holding at: 45, now 45% males, 53% females)
        
    • Marion County: 17,799 cases (17,698 residents, 101 non-residents), 1,335 hospitalizations (6 non-residents), with 463 deaths (median age holding at: 44, with 42% males, 57% females)

    * The new data includes the number of test results the department receives from the counties, along with additional demographics and graphs that show hospital admissions for patients complaining of cough, fever or shortness of breath. Previously, that data was only provided for larger counties. Still not included is how many infected people have recovered from the virus and, unlike other states, Florida does not report "probable" deaths from the virus.
     

    *
    * The newest reported deaths are the latest logged into the DOH system, and that process could take as long as two weeks or longer before they show up.


     

    Per the Florida's COVID Action dashboard as of Friday, January 1st, the state now has 1,418,656 residents testing positive (17,192 cases today, 76,075 cases this past week, 34,528 pediatric cases this week); with 6,368 requiring hospitalization; and 21,990 deaths (133 deaths today, 817 deaths this past week). So far, 211,165 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine (23,269 today). The breakdown of confirmed cases in our tri-county area is:

    • Sumter County: 5,348 cases since March 1st (134 cases today, 428 this week), 196 pediatric cases with 118 K-12 cases (86 students/34 staff), 69 current hospitalizations, and 120 deaths (0 deaths today, 3 this week). So far, 304 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine (45 today).
        
    • Lake County: 16,325 cases since March 1st (358 cases today, 1,287 this week), 1,461 pediatric cases with 483 K-12 cases (344 students/139 staff), 150 current hospitalizations, and 299 deaths (0 deaths today, 9 this week). So far, 3,829 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine (1,015 today).
        
    • Marion County: 18,275 cases since March 1st (348 cases today, 1,197 this week), 1,529 pediatric cases with 634 K-12 cases (417 students/217 staff), 123 current hospitalizations, and 465 deaths (1 death today, 24 this week). So far, 2,050 residents have gotten their 1st dose of vaccine (327 today).

    None of these counties meet the criteria for the next phase of reopening, but are open all the same.



Back to Top of Page