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Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis visited Miami Care Center in South Florida on Tuesday.
Watch the governor’s remarks in the player above.
The governor said the facility currently has 70 beds available for COVID-19 positive residents of long-term care facilities and will soon have up to 150 beds available.
He emphasized the need to protect the vulnerable population of the state during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
“Now’s the time to exercise that caution. So we’ve at the state have advised from really March that if you are in those vulnerable groups to avoid crowds and limit the contact with people outside your household and now especially understanding that that that 20 to 30 year old cohort, you’re seeing more and more infections in that age group,” DeSantis said.
DeSantis also outlined other medical facilities across the state that are well-equipped to take care of COVID-19 patients.
“So, in South Florida, you now have the Miami Care Center. You have a facility in Broward, that’s COVID only. And then you have two in Palm Beach County that are COVID only. So that’s a that’s a pretty significant number of beds to be able to care for people who are COVID positive, but care for them in a way that they’re not spreading it to other vulnerable seniors in these long-term care facilities,” he said.
On Tuesday, Florida’s Democratic congressional delegation blasted his response to the coronavirus outbreak.
The Democrats said that his refusal to issue statewide orders requiring masks and closing beaches is killing Floridians and spreading the disease.
They also called on the Republican governor to close gyms and bar inside dining at restaurants again.
They said he has never met with a bipartisan congressional delegation to discuss the virus and his administration’s order Monday requiring school districts to reopen classrooms this fall usurps local authority and endangers families.
DeSantis did not address any of the issues during the hour-long press conference.
The Democrats’ call came shortly after the state confirmed 7,347 new cases Tuesday, bringing the total since March 1 to 213,794.
Another 63 people died, bringing the total to 3,943.
The 45 deaths per day averaged over the last week is a 50% jump since three weeks ago.
Florida has been averaging more than 8,500 new confirmed cases per day over the past week, almost eight times the average of a month ago.
Only a fraction of that is caused by increased testing — over the past week, about 46,000 people per day are being tested, a 70% increase from a month ago.
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