New COVID-19 cases in Florida hit their lowest mark this week in three months, marking six consecutive weeks of declining numbers.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website showed a total of 25,684 new cases for the week of Oct. 1-7 as reported by the state. The Weekly Situation Report for the period wasn’t available at press time.

There were 23,365 in the week beginning July 2, as the delta variant surge was starting to take off. At its peak, Florida would average more than 21,000 new cases per day.

The 2,728 cases reported Oct. 3 were the fewest since July 5, though the number has gone up slightly every day since then, to 3,974 on Friday.

Hospitalizations and ICU occupancy continue to drop as well.

On Friday, according to the Florida Hospital Association, 4,059 people with COVID-19 were hospitalized. The Department of Health and Human Services reported that 1,103 COVID-19 patients were in ICU beds.

Sarasota Memorial Hospital’s COVID census Friday was 75 patients, with 39 unable to be discharged due to complications though they are virus-free.

The ICU had 35 COVID patients, with 23 not yet able to be discharged.

The census was essentially the same on Wednesday, when the hospital reported that 81% of COVID patients were unvaccinated, with 89% of people in the ICU and people on ventilators unvaccinated.

SMH’s seven-day positivity average was 2.1% Friday, compared to 4.5% for the prior period. It reported two deaths, and a total of eight for the week.

Venice Regional Bayfront Health had eight COVID patients Friday and reported no additional deaths.

The Sarasota County School District reported nine staff and 127 students in isolation Friday, and eight staff and 241 students quarantined.


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