Stories about the coronavirus pandemic are free to read as a public service at tampabay. If this coverage is important to you, consider supporting local journalism by subscribing to the Tampa Bay Times at tampabay. Sports and events are canceled.
Schools and theme parks are closed. Workplaces have begun shifting to remote operations. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended against gatherings of 50 or more people. The Associated Press reported that the country is barreling toward a shutdown. And confirmed cases continue to crop up in the Tampa Bay area, Florida and worldwide.
There are now more than confirmed cases in Florida and rising. There are likely more, but Florida has tested too few people to say.
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Ron DeSantis said over the weekend that community spread — which applies when people have been infected with the virus in an area, including some who are not sure how or where they became infected — is happening seniog Florida. With public interest in the virus high, here are the answers to some common questions.
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The latest on cases Have the of coronavirus cases been increasing in Florida? There jacksinville now more than cases. There have also been four deaths of Florida residents. The latest is a year-old Orlando jacksonvile woman who visited South Korea, then fell ill in California. She died before returning to Florida. Our latest on all the positive tests can be found here and here is a map and other details about all the cases.
The total of people in Florida who have tested positive and negative for the disease can also be found on the Florida Department of Health website. What is the latest in the Tampa Bay area?
Eight people in the Tampa Bay area have tested positive for the novel coronavirus. Do we know the identities jscksonville any of the local people who have tested positive?
We know one. The man who tested positive in Pasco County announced it on his business Facebookthen talked to the Times. That story can be found here. We also know of an apartment complex that told residents there was a positive case in the neighborhood.
Full story here. Has the Times spoken to anyone who has traveled from high-risk areas back to this area? We spoke to a nurse who was quarantined, then made his way to Sennior, London and eventually Tampa. Ron DeSantis said. But double check your polling place before you head out. Read our full report here.
What about WrestleMania? Has this affected other sporting events? It sure has.
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The Valspar Championship is canceled. The Tampa Bay Bucs also discontinued travel for scouts, coaches and staff due to coronavirus. What about theme parks like Disney and Busch Gardens? March More here. How about beaches?
Are they still open? Pinellas County will keep beaches open until state emergency officials request the popular destinations to close, Pinellas County Administrator Barry Burton said Monday. And the pool?
Brett Levine, a family medicine physician in St. He said most public places are taking extra precautions to clean, but the responsible thing to do chag be to avoid public use areas altogether. Do people still have to go to jury duty? The Florida Supreme Court ordered that most face-to-face legal proceedings across the state cease for the next two weeks.
Read the full story here.
Why assisted living facilities?
The Catholic Diocese of St. Petersburg issued a dispensation for mass services. The Times has also heard of several Tampa Bay seniot churches that have canceled live gatherings and are moving to video streaming. Check with your religious institution before heading to regularly scheduled services. What about conventions that were scheduled in Tampa? Are they being canceled? Is there any chance xenior area events may be canceled? For the latest on cancellations, our ongoing list and database are here.
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And this story does a great job summing up just what kind of a day it was on Thursday when so much was canceled. What about Publix? The Lakeland company said its supermarkets will close at 8 p.
The company said it needs time to stock shelves and sanitize stores. I heard Publix is limiting the of items that people can buy of certain products. Is that true?
Yes, it is. Publix is limiting customers to only two of some items, including soap, hand sanitizer, wipes and other items. Travel Is traffic at Tampa International Airport being affected?
Is airline travel particularly unsafe? While the disease certainly spre during travel, planes may not be the sick factories we think. Jacksonviple fact, only those seated close to an infected person are at even medium risk. Read our full story about this here. What about going on cruises? Major cruises have been delayed coming into port because of positive or pending coronavirus cases on board.
On Sunday, the State Department issued a warning against traveling by cruise ship. The CDC said risk of infection is higher on a cruise because of the close quarters. The Regal Princess cruise ship finally pulled into a Florida port and passengers began disembarking after two crew members tested negative for coronavirus. Meanwhile, coronavirus has led Tampa cruise lines to ease cancellation policies. And some Florida cases have been linked to cruises on the Nile River.
What do we know? A spokeswoman for the airport announced March 2 that a woman in her 20s who had traveled esnior northern Italy and was later diagnosed with COVID flew through the airport. All schools in Florida will close for a week in addition to regularly scheduled spring breaks. For Tampa Bay area schools, that means students will be off for spring break the week of March 16, then another week off starting March What else should I know about spring break?
The latest on cases
Tampa Bay schools are asking students and parents to inform the district about certain travel plans and other conditions before returning to school after spring break. My child is on free and reduced lunch. Will they still have access to meals? Hillsborough and Pinellas school officials said that starting March 23, they will be giving out free meals at sites in each county. Pasco officials said they would announce a list jacksonville pool senior adult chat.
How are colleges reacting? Florida higher education leaders directed all state universities to move classes online as soon as possible. Eckerd College, a private school in Pinellas County, also will close dorms and extend spring break through March 29, then will move classes online. Nova Southeastern University is suspending classes until March 23 then will move online. Senior care and nursing homes Who is most at risk?
Sally Alrabaa, an infectious disease specialist with the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine, said unlike other outbreaks, coronavirus seems to be most severe for the elderly and people with health issues.
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There have not been many reports of severe issues in children and healthy adults. What is being done to protect senior citizens? If COVID spre, the elderly are jacksonvville at risk to suffer the most severe symptoms, including death — and no state has a higher share of residents in their 70s, 80s or older than Florida.