Tracking coronavirus: Florida health officials report 8,109 new cases and 212 more deaths

Below is a log of the day's events as it relates to the global coronavirus pandemic.

8:00 p.m. -- The Big East Conference said Wednesday that it will postpone its fall sports season, joining the Pac-12 and Big Ten in pausing play out of concern for the welfare of student-athletes during the coronavirus pandemic.READ MORE.

6:00 p.m. -- Gov.  Ron DeSantis on Wednesday warned “policymakers” about problems with COVID-19 data collected and published by the state and said he directed the Department of Health to “remedy” the issue. READ MORE.

3:00  p.m. -- The Florida Department of Health (DOH) on Wednesday said it received a backlog of coronavirus testing data from a Miami laboratory. READ MORE:

1:45 p.m. -- A research team at the University of Florida successfully isolated the live virus from aerosols collected at a distance of seven to 16 feet from patients hospitalized with COVID-19. More details about the study HERE.

1:00 p.m. -- Orange County will soon launch a $20 million program to help renters and landlords struggling because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. How to apply HERE.

12:45 p.m. -- Officials say they have arrested two Florida men on charges they illegally sold a bleachlike chemical as a miracle cure for the new coronavirus and other diseases. Seven people died from taking the substance. Read more HERE.

12:35 p.m. -- Florida might seek a loan through the U.S. Department of Labor to cover the state’s portion of a plan by President Donald Trump to extend federal unemployment benefits and have states put up 25 percent of the cash. Details HERE.

12:27 p.m. -- Police and city officials in Miami Beach have issued $14,400 in fines to people who weren’t wearing facial coverings to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Read more HERE.

12:00 p.m. -- With a coronavirus vaccine still months off, companies are rushing to test what may be the next best thing: drugs that deliver antibodies to fight the virus right away, without having to train the immune system to make them. Read more about antibody drugs HERE.

10:30 a.m. -- The Florida Department of Health reported 8,109 new cases and 212 more deaths on Wednesday. The statewide total for COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic is now at 550,901, resulting in 8,765 deaths. 

8 12 new cases

Florida health officials said that the case count for the day is higher than usual because the Niznik Lab Corp in Miami received a backlog of testing data, dating back to June 23rd. They reported over 4,000 cases over the last seven weeks on Wednesday.

9:09 a.m. -- Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods is making national headlines after forbidding his deputies and visitors to the sheriff's office from wearing face masks, according to a new report. This after Florida reported its largest single-day jump in deaths yet on Tuesday. Details HERE.

7:58 a.m. -- A doctor in the United Kingdom decided to prove a point about masks after seeing some questionable claims that they drop a wearer’s oxygen levels being shared on social media. More HERE.

6:57 a.m. -- Several new coronavirus testing sites are opening in Central Florida. Find the list HERE.

5:39 a.m. -- Seminole County Public Schools finalized plans to welcome students back soon. Some of those changes include policies around wearing masks. Details HERE.

5:17 a.m. -- The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) has suspended the alcohol license for Mathers LLC & Dobson Family Trust, the company which oversees operations for Joysticks, Mathers, and Shots in Downtown Orlando. 

5:00 a.m. -- Coronavirus clinical vaccine trials have started across the country. In Central Florida, thousands more participants are needed. Read more HERE.

4:30 a.m. -- The Florida Department of Health on Tuesday reported 5,831 new cases and 276 more deaths. That is the largest single-day jump in deaths yet, breaking the previous record of 257 deaths on July 30th. The statewide total of cases is now at 542,792 since the start of the pandemic, resulting in 8,553 deaths.

RELATED: Interactive map of COVID-19 cases across Florida 

If you are having trouble seeing the map or using it (especially on a mobile device), click here to load in a new window.

Phase two of Florida's reopening is ongoing. The following is in effect:

  • Restaurants can now allow bar-top seating with appropriate social distancing.
  • Bars and pubs were originally able to operate with 50 percent capacity indoors and full capacity outside as long as appropriate social distancing is followed. However, the state has put a temporary ban on liquor sales at bars as COVID-19 cases surge, forcing many bars to close.
  • Retail stores can now operate at full capacity with responsible social distancing and sanitization protocols.
  • Gyms can now operate at full capacity as well with appropriate social distancing and frequent sanitization. 
  • Entertainment businesses, like movie theaters, concert houses, auditoriums, playhouses, bowling alleys and arcades, can operate at 50 percent with appropriate social distancing and sanitization protocols. 
  • Personal services businesses, including but not limited to tattoo parlors, acupuncture establishments, tanning salons, and massage establishments, may operate with guidance from the Florida Department of Health.
  • Pari-mutuel betting facilities can submit a request to reopen to the Department of Business and Professional Regulation. The request must include an endorsement from their county mayor or county administrator if there is no mayor.

Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach -- which are the counties that got hit the heaviest by coronavirus in Florida -- will remain in phase one for the time being. When ready, they can seek approval from their county mayor or county administrator to enter phase two.

RELATED: Florida to be part of COVID-19 vaccine pilot

Coronavirus can spread from person to person through small droplets from the nose or mouth, including when an individual coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land on objects and surfaces. Others can then contract the virus by touching these objects or surfaces, then their eyes, nose or mouth. 

As stated before, symptoms of the coronavirus include fever, cough and shortness of breath. They may show in as few as two days or as many as 14 days following exposure, the Florida Department of Health says. Most people recover from COVID-19 without special treatment, but the elderly and those with underlying medical problems are more likely to develop serious illness.

If you display coronavirus symptoms, you should contact a local health organization and make them aware of your condition prior to arrival while also following specific instructions or guidelines they may have.

RELATED: COVID-19 vaccine trials in need of thousands of volunteers

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911 and let them know if you have been infected or believe that you may be. If you are infected, a medical professional or another authority will likely advise that you remain isolated while sick. This includes staying at home and not going into public places or large events.

Please visit the Department’s dedicated COVID-19 webpage for information and guidance regarding COVID-19 in Florida.

For any other questions related to COVID-19 in Florida, please contact the Department’s dedicated COVID-19 Call Center by calling 1-(866) 779-6121. The Call Center is available 24 hours a day. Inquiries may also be emailed to

RELATED: ICU doctor runs 22 miles while wearing mask to prove it doesn’t drop oxygen levels

Globally, there have been over 20.3 million COVID-19 cases, resulting in over 743,000 deaths, according to John Hopkins University.

Below is an interactive John Hopkins University dashboard, showing a country-by-country breakdown of positive COVID-19 cases across the world.

MOBILE USERS: Click here to view the interactive John Hopkins University dashboard

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