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Florida records more than 15,000 new COVID-19 cases in one day, the highest single-day increase in any state

Florida recorded more than 15,000 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday, the highest single-day increase any state has experienced during the pandemic, officials reported.

Florida’s Department of Health confirmed 15,299 new coronavirus cases in the state, bringing its total to 269,811. 

The state also reported 45 new deaths, for a total of 4,242 fatalities in Florida. The new cases and deaths were “reported since yesterday,” according to the website.

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Previously, California held the record for the most confirmed cases in a day, with 11,694 four days ago. Before that, New York had 11,571 on April 15, The Associated Press reported

The record increase comes after Florida documented 514 fatalities last week. Florida has increased the number of tests it conducts, but the percentage of tests coming back positive has also jumped.

A month ago, fewer than 5 percent of tests returned positive results, while more than 19 percent of tests were positive over the past week.

Florida began reopening its economy in May and June, with a few restrictions, and a surge in cases began near the end of June. 

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantisRon DeSantisFlorida scientist who accused state of manipulating coronavirus data tests positive for COVID-19, turns herself in Overnight Health Care: Testing capacity strained as localities struggle with vaccine staffing | Health workers refusing vaccine is growing problem | Incoming CDC director expects 500,000 COVID deaths by mid-February COVID-19 testing capacity strained as localities struggle with vaccine staffing MORE (R) responded by ordering that alcohol not be served in bars but has not yet issued a mask mandate like other states enduring surges. The governor has said that although the rate is increasing, he wants schools to reopen with in-person learning next month.

Disney World’s Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom also reopened with restrictions on Saturday despite the increasing cases, according to the AP.

The U.S. as a whole is also seeing an increase in daily identified cases, reaching its highest point on Friday with 68,241 new cases counted, according to The New York Times.