Florida Reports Record Covid Infections as Weekly Cases Rise 12%
Florida’s weekly Covid-19 cases rose to a record, with confirmed infections increasing 12% to 151,415 for the seven days through Thursday as Governor Ron DeSantis stakes his claim against mask mandates.
The state recorded an additional 1,071 deaths, a daily average of 153, according to a weekly report published by the state health department. That compares with an average of 185 deaths per day in Florida last August, Johns Hopkins University data show.
Earlier this month, DeSantis said Florida’s Covid-19 mortalities were still trending about 70-75% lower than previous peaks. That’s no longer the case.
DeSantis and Texas Governor Greg Abbott, both Republicans, are facing legal challenges and revolts from local authorities over mask requirements in schools. DeSantis says parents should be free to choose whether their children wear masks to school.
Supporters of masking point out that only children 12 and over are eligible to receive a Covid-19 vaccine.
Weekly vaccinations in Florida were little changed at 384,328. The state has inoculated 65% of people age 12 and older, a definition that tallies together partly and fully vaccinated people, according to the report.
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