In yesterday’s update, Florida was trending toward 15,000 positive coronavirus cases by the end of March. With more data, we have a new update. Over the past 24 hours, Florida added another 104 positive COVID-19 cases to the official Florida Department of Health tracking website. That’s a slight downtick from the record 112 cases added the day prior, and it bumped our March projection down just slightly, to 14,400 cases. As of Friday morning, we are awaiting the results of 1,126 COVID-19 tests.
Here’s the current data:
It’s possible to see a very slight downward curve in the data. But overall, there remains a steady upward spike, and still trending toward some significant growth over the final ten days of the month.
Yesterday, our model projected 600 cases were possible by Saturday morning. That would represent a doubling in the number of cases every two to three days. That is consistent with the explosive growth we are seeing around the world, and in particular, in the United States. Italy took 30 days to top 41,000 cases. At our current pace nationally, it will take the U.S. just 23 days to hit that number:
The picture here in the Sunshine State remains murky, due in part to the availability of testing and the still-unknown impact of millions of residents isolating in their homes. But based on the latest data, we should see another record number of cases today, potentially topping 200 or more. If that continues to happen, this is the latest projection for Florida through the end of the month:
Note the trendline based on yesterday’s projection versus today’s projection – slightly lower, but not by much. Roughly 14,400 cases based on current exponential growth rates.
The takeaway is that we need to do all we can to minimize the infection rate and slow the exponential growth. Instead of one infected person passing the virus to two or three more people, we need to cut that to one, or ideally, zero. Doing so will reduce the burden on hospitals and health care providers so that we can more effectively treat those who will require medical care once infected.