ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Florida reported 21,683 new instances of COVID-19, the state’s highest one-day complete because the begin of the pandemic, in line with federal well being information launched Saturday, as its theme park resorts once more began asking guests to put on masks indoors.
The state has turn into the brand new nationwide epicenter for the virus, accounting for round a fifth of all new instances within the U.S.
Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has resisted obligatory masks mandates and vaccine necessities, and together with the state Legislature, has restricted native officers’ means to impose restrictions meant to cease the unfold of COVID-19. DeSantis on Friday barred faculty districts from requiring college students to put on masks when courses resume subsequent month.
The newest numbers had been recorded on Friday and launched on Saturday on the U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention’s website. The figures present how rapidly the variety of instances is rising within the Sunshine State: solely a day earlier, Florida reported 17,093 new every day instances. The earlier peak in Florida had been 19,334 instances reported on Jan. 7, earlier than the provision of vaccinations turned widespread.
The Florida Hospital Affiliation mentioned Friday that statewide COVID-19 hospitalizations are nearing final yr’s peak, and one of many state’s largest well being care programs, AdventHealth’s Central Florida Division, this week suggested it will now not be conducting nonemergency surgical procedures so as to liberate sources for COVID-19 sufferers.
Common Orlando Resort and SeaWorld on Saturday turned the newest theme park resorts in Florida to once more ask guests to put on masks indoors, with Common additionally ordering its staff to put on face coverings to guard in opposition to COVID-19, which has been surging throughout the state.
All employees at Common’s Florida park on Saturday began being required to put on masks whereas indoors as the staff returned to working towards social distancing. The house to Harry Potter and Despicable Me rides additionally requested guests to comply with federal and native well being pointers by voluntarily carrying face coverings indoors.
“The well being and security of our friends and staff members is all the time our prime precedence,” Common mentioned in a press release.
Well being officers on Friday introduced that coronavirus instances in Florida had jumped 50% over the previous week with COVID-19 hospitalizations within the state nearing final yr’s peak.
SeaWorld on Saturday posted on its web site that it was recommending that guests comply with lately up to date federal suggestions and put on face coverings whereas indoors.
The change in coverage this week on the theme park resorts got here after the U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention really useful that everybody put on masks indoors, no matter vaccination standing.
Crosstown rival Walt Disney World began requiring staff and friends older than 2 to put on masks on Friday, but it surely additionally went a step additional. The Walt Disney Firm mentioned in a press release that it will likely be requiring all salaried and non-union hourly staff within the U.S. who work on web site to be absolutely vaccinated.
Disney staff who aren’t already vaccinated could have 60 days to take action and people nonetheless working from residence might want to present proof of vaccination earlier than returning. Disney mentioned it was discussing the vaccine necessities with the union, and added that every one new hires will likely be required to be absolutely vaccinated earlier than beginning work on the firm.
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