Florida adds 16K COVID-19 cases over holiday break

Florida reported 16,610 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed over the Christmas holiday —Thursday and Friday — according to data released by the Florida Department of Health on Saturday.

The state also recorded 140 new deaths, and 188 additional hospitalizations over the two days. Since the start of the pandemic, the state has seen 1,243,118 confirmed cases and 21,135 deaths.

The department did not release a daily report on Friday, taking a break in observance of the Christmas holiday. The Friday break marks only the second time since the start of the pandemic in March that the department has opted not to release a daily report — the first break was on Thanksgiving, when the data was released the following Friday.

In the latest report, the state confirmed 10,650 cases on Thursday, and only 5,961 cases on Friday. The Friday dip comes as expected, since only 68,507 test results were returned on the holiday, compared to recent average around 125,000. Of the tests received on Christmas, 8% were positive, keeping with the state’s two-week average of 8.54%.

The positivity rate for new cases began increasing again the day after Thanksgiving, nearly neutralizing two weeks of improvements since positivity rates topped 10%

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