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Coronavirus Testing and Treatment Scales Up

Minot Air Force Base
A petri dish used for testing

Governor Ron DeSantis said at press conferences on Saturday and Sunday that the capacity for coronavirus testing and treatment is scaling up significantly in Florida.



Federally supported test sites are opening throughout the state, he said. On Saturday, a site opened in Jacksonville at Jaguar Stadium. Sunday, a site opened in Miami at the Hard Rock Stadium. And on Wednesday, a site is slated to open in Orlando at the Orange County Convention Center. The sites will test people 65 and older who have symptoms, as well as first responders and healthcare workers regardless of symptoms.


Jared Moskowitz, Director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management, announced that 300,000 N95 masks arrived in Florida on Saturday. He expects 2 million more in the next two weeks. The masks are protective gear for healthcare workers.


In addition, the state has made 3,000 ICU beds available, with medical personnel on standby. Field hospitals with 250-person capacities will open in Broward and Dade counties in coming days.


Florida recently received 5,000 coronavirus testing kits, which were sent to Broward County. An assisted living facility in Broward was found on Friday not to be screening staff. As of Saturday, DeSantis said, 10 residents there had been infected with COVID-19 and three had died from it.


DeSantis added that while fatalities have been higher in older people, the majority of COVID-19 infections in the state are in people under the age of 60. Moskowitz emphasized that social distancing works, and urged young people to do their part by staying home and giving up their spring break, saying, “The beaches will still be there.”