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How did Florida end up with one of the best COVID-19 case and death rates in the US despite Gov Ron DeSantis refusing to implement mask or vaccine mandates?

How did Florida end up with one of the best COVID-19 case and death rates in the US?

FLORIDA CASES: During the peak of the recent COVID-19 surge in Florida, the state was recording 101 cases per 100,000, which has since declined to nine new cases per 100,000

FLORIDA CASES: During the peak of the recent COVID-19 surge in Florida, the state was recording 101 cases per 100,000, which has since declined to nine new cases per 100,000

FLORIDA DEATHS: Florida was recording 1.77 new deaths per 100,000 people during the peak of the surge, which has since fallen to fewer than 0.01 deaths per 100,000

FLORIDA DEATHS: Florida was recording 1.77 new deaths per 100,000 people during the peak of the surge, which has since fallen to fewer than 0.01 deaths per 100,000

In mid-August, the COVID-19 crisis perhaps looked no more dire than in Florida.

The state reached a record-high 26,000 Covid cases reported in one day or about 101 cases per 100,000 people.   

This is 44 percent higher than the previous peak of 18,000 cases per day recorded in January 2021, according to CDC data.

During this time, there were 17,200 COVID-19 hospitalizations - three-fold higher than the 5,700 seen just one month earlier. 

Additionally, Florida reported a record-high 227 deaths per day in mid-August or 1.77 per 100,000.

However, Governor DeSantis defended himself against critics and told Fox News in an interview on August 26 that the state was having 'great success' treating COVID-19 patients early with monoclonal antibodies.

He also slammed President Joe Biden for failing to end the pandemic.   

'You know, he said he was going to end Covid. He hasn't done that,' DeSantis told host Jesse Watters. 

'At the end of the day, he is trying to find a way to distract from the failures of his presidency.'

At the time, doctors and public health experts said that DeSantis's laissez-faire approach was a gamble, but it appears to have paid off.

CDC data show Florida is recording 64 cases per 100,000 people in a week or nine cases per 100,000 people per day as of Wednesday.

This means the The Sunshine State has the best case rate in the country behind California, Mississippi, Hawaii and Alabama, respectively.

Currently, California recording 28 cases per 100,000 people in a week or three cases per 100,000 people per day. 

The declines are despite Governor Ron DeSantis insisting the state would not shut down and refusing to implement mask or vaccine mandates and instead focusing efforts on early treatment. Pictured: DeSantis speaks at a press conference at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida, August 2021
Experts have suggested the declines seem to follow a familiar two-month cycle since the pandemic began with cases and deaths increasing for about two months before dropping, which as been seen in other states that experienced surges over the summer such as Alabama, Louisiana and Texas

Experts have suggested the declines seem to follow a familiar two-month cycle since the pandemic began with cases and deaths increasing for about two months before dropping, which as been seen in other states that experienced surges over the summer such as Alabama, Louisiana and Texas

The same curve can be seen with Covid deaths.

Florida is recording 0.2 deaths per 100,000 people in a week - making it the second best state in the nation.

It is behind only California and New Mexico, which are recording 0.1 death per 100,000 people in a week. 

Both of these metrics are despite DeSantis refusing to allow business and schools from implementing mask and vaccine mandates.

This is similar to what has been seen in the U.S. with the recent Delta variant-fueled surge.

On September 1, America was averaging 49.9 cases per 100,000. As of Wednesday, this has dropped to 21.2 cases per 100,000. 

Despite taking very different approaches to the pandemic, Florida and California are recording nearly the same amount of average cases and deaths per day

So does the governor deserve all the credit for Florida's improvement? Not necessarily. 

These declines seem to follow a familiar two-month cycle since the pandemic began in early 2020 with cases and deaths increasing for about two months before declining, according to David Leonhardt of The New York Times.

Early explanations - such as the virus being seasonal like the flu or compliance of mask wearing and social distancing increasing and decreasing - have not held up.

However, more logical explanations include that as people have contracted COVID-19 over the last two months, the virus is (slowly) running out of people to infect.

'Since the pandemic began, Covid has often followed a regular - if mysterious - cycle. In one country after another, the number of new cases has often surged for roughly two months before starting to fall,' Leonhardt wrote. 

'The Delta variant, despite its intense contagiousness, has followed this pattern.'   

This means a variant may only need eight weeks to spread throughout a community before it begins to recede. 

The two-month cycle theory has also been seen in the U.S. during every surge including the summer 2020 wave and the winter 2020-21 wave

During the summer 2020 surge in the U.S., cases began rising in early July before declining again in early September.

What's more, during the winter 2020-21 surge, Covid infections steeply increased in late November 2020 only to fall again in late January 2021.

It seems that what has occurred on a nationwide scale is what occurred on a much smaller scale in Florida. 

The recent surge saw cases starting to rise in the Sunshine State in early July and declining in mid-September, following the two month-schedule. 

And it's not the only state: Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, South Carolina and Texas, all of which saw cases surge during the recent fourth wave, have seen declines since early September. 

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Comment by caribmama on November 1, 2021 at 4:50pm

There is no way Floridas rates have dropped when you have maskless people running around everywhere. Did they all of a sudden find a miracle cure? Last I heard people are still getting sick and dying from it in Florida. This man is trying to run for President. So he has to force the media to lie about it. 

Comment by Ricardo O'Connor on October 30, 2021 at 5:54pm

Just a couple of months ago, DeSantis got blamed for high Covid cases and now the numbers are low and he’s getting blame for lying.  

Comment by Ricardo O'Connor on October 30, 2021 at 5:48pm

@Danny Ortiz, exactly! I am a Florida resident who had the delta variant and built up herd immunity. 

Comment by vaughn mitchell on October 28, 2021 at 9:13pm
They damn lie. Stop the bullshit, the Governor, made sure the results look positive.
Comment by caribmama on October 28, 2021 at 8:29pm

PAID OFF LIES IS WHAT IT'S CALLED! 

Comment by Danny Ortiz on October 27, 2021 at 9:13pm

Dumb mofo's! its called "herd immunity" and NOT living in fear.

Comment by Robert on October 27, 2021 at 8:32pm
How sad, the bias Media won't mention this

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