Florida's COVID-19 cases top 470,000 in Friday's report; 257 new deaths set another single-day record

The Florida Department of Health says the number of known cases of COVID-19 in the state rose by 9,007 since Thursday morning as the virus spreads and as more people are tested across the state. The total number of cases in Florida is now 470,386.

The number of Florida resident deaths has reached 6,843, an increase of 257 since Thursday's update, which the fourth day in a row that Florida sets a new record for COVID-19 deaths reported. In addition, a total of 123 non-Floridians have died in the state.

Locally, Pinellas County is reporting 14 new deaths; Polk and Manatee counties are each reporting six new deaths; Hillsborough Count is reporting four new deaths; Hernando and Sumter counties are each reporting three new deaths; Pasco County is reporting two new deaths; and Citrus and Sarasota counties are each reporting one new death.

Of the 470,386 cases, 465,030 are Florida residents while 5,356 are non-Florida residents currently in the state.

Bay Area COVID-19 cases by the numbers:

Hillsborough: 29,116

Pinellas: 16,356

Sarasota: 5,588

Manatee: 8,517

Sumter: 1,077

Polk: 12,488

Citrus: 1,205

Hernando: 1,674

Pasco: 6,299

Highlands: 1,163

DeSoto: 1,264

Hardee: 833

The state is not reporting a total number of "recovered" coronavirus patients. As of Friday, 8,260 Floridians were currently hospitalized for a primary diagnosis of COVID-19; in total, 26,533 have been hospitalized for treatment at some point.

A total of 3,633,393 people have been tested in the state as of Thursday -- about 16.9% of the state's population -- according to the Florida Department of Health.

LINK: County-by-county Florida coronavirus cases and ZIP code map

(Source: Florida Department of Health)

Today's new case number represents the 59th straight day with new cases near or over 1,000 per day. The rate of positive new tests has increased during that time period. It was at 10.57% on Wednesday, the most recent date available.

As the number of new cases has trended up over the last few weeks, the number of deaths has also reflected the same upward trend -- though "significant delays" in data reporting, as the state says, make interpreting short-term trends from that statistic less reliable.

The 253 new deaths reported Thursday was the largest number of daily new deaths since the pandemic began. The previous high was 253 deaths added Thursday, followed by 216 added Wednesday. 

PDF: DOH's full county-by-county COVID-19 case report

(Source: Florida Department of Health)

Experts say the current spike is partly due to more tests being given, but also a result of reopening the state.

Gov. Ron DeSantis says the recent case increases are largely due to testing of "high-risk" individuals like farmworkers in the state's rural counties, prisoners, and residents of long-term care facilities, though he has more recently noted the "erosion" in social distancing, especially among the younger demographics in social setting. That prompted him to order all bars to cease serving alcohol.

Editor's note: The number of new cases and deaths reported each day does not necessarily reflect the day that the case was confirmed. The state says some private testing labs dump large batches of test results which include cases from previous days. Stats for today and previous days will likely change in the future as the state reviews more cases and updates retroactive data.

The state's number of deaths represents permanent Florida residents who have died from COVID-19.