Small number of tri-county residents have been tested for COVID-19 virus

The 96 cases of COVID-19 in the tri-county area – 35 in the Villages alone – have been identified among the 1,798 people who have been tested locally for the potentially deadly virus.

That’s a relatively small number of tests compared to some counties where several thousand people have been tested – especially given the fact that the majority of the 150,000-plus residents in The Villages area fall into the category of people who are most susceptible to the dangers of COVID-19.

Testing for the COVID-19 virus and for future research on the disease got under way at The Villages Polo Fields last week.

Statistics show that 590 Sumter County residents have been tested, with some of those presumably being checked at a testing station that opened at The Villages Polo Fields last week. Of those who were checked, 40 were identified as having the virus – including 33 in The Villages – while 545 did not. Five tests were identified as inconclusive and six residents still are awaiting tests.

In Lake County, 800 people have been tested – the most in the tri-county area. Thirty-eight came back positive, 762 were negative and seven people area awaiting tests. Two of those testing positive are Villagers, while 10 are being reported in Leesburg, eight in Clermont, three in Eustis, two in Tavares and one in Mount Dora.

Marion County, which late Saturday afternoon doubled its COVID-19 cases in 24 hours, showed an overnight jump of eight positive cases, has tested 408 people. Of those, 18 came back positive, 390 were negative and 134 people are awaiting tests. Thirteen of them live in Ocala, with one each residing in Belleview, Dunnellon, Ocklawaha and Summerfield.

Overall, just 5 percent of the tri-county residents who have been tested for the Coronavirus have come back positive. They include 49 women and 47 men.

Statewide, 41,769 people have been tested, with 4,038 coming back positive (3,877 are Florida residents), 37,720 negative, 11 inconclusive and 1,302 awaiting tests. That translates to a 10 percent rate of positive tests – twice the percentage of positive results in the tri-county area.

Of the 96 positive results in the tri-county area, 91 are residents and five are not. Forty-nine of the cases have been deemed travel related and it hasn’t been determined if another 24 of those residents have traveled recently.

Those who have reported traveling have visited a variety of worldwide destinations, including the United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany, Puerto Rico, Europe, Egypt, Belie, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, the Caribbean, the Turks and Caicos Islands, Spain, Mexico, Africa and the Netherlands.

Some of those travelers also have ventured across the United States recently to New York, New Jersey, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Oregon, Texas, California, Louisiana, Vermont, Colorado, Tennessee, Georgia, Wisconsin, South Carolina and other destinations in Florida. Both New York and Louisiana are considered “hot spots” for the Coronavirus and Gov. Ron DeSantis has instituted a travel ban for residents coming to Florida from those states that requires them to self-isolate for 14 days.

The Coronavirus cases involving Florida residents – 2,101 men, 1,671 women and 105 unknown – have struck across all age groups. The breakdown is as follows:

  • 0-4 (10 cases with one hospitalization)
  • 5-14 (26 cases with one hospitalization)
  • 15-24 (322 cases with six hospitalizations)
  • 25-34 (561 cases with 19 hospitalizations)
  • 35-44 (578 cases with 48 hospitalizations and 2 deaths)
  • 45-54 (692 cases with 78 hospitalizations and 2 deaths)
  • 55-64 (652 cases with 113 hospitalizations and 2 deaths)
  • 65-74 (573 cases with 134 hospitalizations and 17 deaths)
  • 75-84 (349 cases with 119 hospitalizations and 22 deaths)
  • 85-plus (111 cases with 48 hospitalizations and 11 deaths)

None of the 56 COVID-19 deaths in Florida have taken place in the tri-county area, where approximately 865,000 residents live. The counties where they have occurred include Broward (11), Citrus (1), Clay (4), Dade (3), Duval (3), Highlands (1), Hillsborough (2), Lee (6), Manatee (1), Orange (4), Palm Beach (6), Pasco (2), Pinellas (4), Santa Rosa (1), Sarasota (2), St. Johns (2), St. Lucie (2) and Volusia (1).

Thirty-nine of the victims were men and 17 were women. The oldest was a 96-year-old Broward County woman and the youngest was a 39-year-old Lee County man. Thirteen of them had traveled recently to Brazil, the Caribbean, Dominican Republic, the Philippines, South Korea, France, Bulgaria, Germany, Egypt Israel, Jordon, New York, Virginia, Utah, Delaware, Minnesota and destinations in Florida.

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