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Positive rate of COVID-19 testing drops in Florida

MIAMI

Florida is reporting for the first time in almost two months that fewer than 10% of the people testing for COVID-19 are infected with the virus.

Figures released by the state health department on Thursday show the daily rate for people testing positive for the coronavirus was slightly below that threshold after the state reached nearly 21% on July 8.

The figure used by state and local governments to weigh reopening decisions hadn’t dipped this low since June 21. The seven-day average of new confirmed cases at 4,541 was also at a low not seen since June 25.

Florida reported 119 new deaths from the virus Thursday, bringing its total death toll to 10,186. The average daily reported deaths over the past week are 167 — down from a peak of 185 two weeks ago.

Hospitalizations for the disease have been on a downward trend over the past month. Late Thursday morning, 5,340 patients were being treated for the disease in Florida hospitals, compared with Wednesday’s 5,351. That number has dropped from a peak above 9,500 on July 23.

Meanwhile, the state is seeing a slight uptick in the number of residents applying for jobless claims. More than 66,000 Floridians applied for unemployment benefits last week, up from the more than 61,500 Floridians who applied the previous week, according to figures released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Labor.


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