Massive one-day spike in COVID-19 data sends South Florida numbers surging

Tuesday’s COVID-19 report from the Department of Health (DOH) showed South Florida experiencing the largest one-day spike in positivity rate since at least May. It’s unclear whether the massive surge is a one-day spike due to how data is being reported or the sign of a massive wave in the region.

For context, Monday’s DOH report showed South Florida’s tri-county area — Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties — with a 9.9% positivity rate. That means just shy of 10% of the tests reported to the state came back positive.

On Tuesday, that number skyrocketed to 22.6%, more than doubling. That’s an increase of 12.7 percentage points day-to-day. In data dating back to May 12, when detailed county reports were widely released, the day-to-day numbers never jumped more than 6 points, and rarely jumped by more than 3 points.

The region’s positivity rate has doubled day-to-day before. Looking at the day-to-day percentage increase, Tuesday’s rise has been topped before. But those prior changes were when the numbers were at far lower levels — for instance, going from a 0.9% positivity rate on May 19 to a 4% positivity rate on May 20. That was a more than four-times increase, but

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