New cases surged to 3,266 from the 738 reported Monday, according to the state’s health department. That’s the highest one-day number since September 19.
DeSantis lifted restrictions on bars and residents Friday, and scenes of crowded bars and restaurants played out around the state over the weekend.
Until recently a coronavirus hotspot, Florida’s cases had been falling, and the state is among only seven with at least a 10% reduction in new cases in the week ending Monday compared to the previous seven days.
Arizona, Georgia, Maryland, Rhode Island, Texas and Virginia are the other six states with a decline in new cases in the past week.
Florida has reported 704,568 cases in total.
Wisconsin hospitalizations are surging
In Wisconsin, Covid-19-related hospitalizations have almost doubled since September 18, according to the Wisconsin Hospital Association, with “multiple hospitals” nearing capacity.
Gov. Tony Evers declared a “a new public health emergency due to campus outbreaks” on September 22, and the WHA sent Evers a letter “requesting additional and immediate policy steps be taken to help hospitals preserve access to care during this troubling new phase of the pandemic.”
“Over the past week, the rate of COVID-19 patients hospitalized per day in Wisconsin has rapidly increased from 362 per day on September 19, to 528 per day on September 24 – a new record that exceeds the previous peak of 446 hospitalizations per day on April 9,” the letter dated September 25 reads.
“Multiple hospitals in the Fox Valley, Northeast, and North Central HERC regions are now reporting they are nearing capacity.”
Dr. Paul Casey, medical director of the emergency department at Bellin Hospital, made a public plea on Facebook for Wisconsinites to take the pandemic more seriously.
“I can’t speak to other areas in the state, but in Brown County, we’re in deep trouble,” Casey told CNN affiliate WBAY.
Evers cautioned Tuesday that the virus is “not slowing down, it’s picking up speed.”
“If we’re going to get this virus under control, then wearing a mask is the absolute least we need you to do,” Evers said at a news conference. “It isn’t safe. This virus is real, and it’s devastating our communities.”
More than 1 million deaths
In less than nine months, the death toll jumped from one coronavirus-related death – in Wuhan, China, on January 9 – to 1,004,482 Tuesday afternoon, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. The US has been hit hard by the virus, with almost 7.2 million reported infections and more than 205,000 deaths.
With recent spikes in US cases, health experts warn things could soon get worse.
Only 20 states are holding steady when it comes to the average of daily new cases compared to last week, while 23 are reporting increases: Alabama, Alaska, Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.