MIAMI — Florida has now confirmed more than 1 million cases of COVID-19.
The state hit the milestone Tuesday when the Florida Department of Health confirmed 8,847 additional cases of the novel coronavirus, bringing the state's known total to 1,008,166.
That makes Florida the third state in the country to record 1 million cases since the pandemic began in March, according to the New York Times COVID-19 Database. The other two states are Texas and California.
Florida also announced 82 COVID-19-related resident deaths, bringing the resident toll to 18,679. It is still unclear if there were any new nonresident deaths. On Monday, the cumulative nonresident toll was 237.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said Monday that the state was not considering any further restrictions on businesses. He went on to say that closing schools in March due to COVID-19 concern was the "biggest public health blunder in modern American history."
The Department of Education also released an emergency order Monday that keeps live, remote classes available as an option for the second semester of classes.
In Miami-Dade County, Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said she tested positive for COVID-19 and is experiencing mild symptoms.
"It's like a cold so far," she said. "Yesterday afternoon, I started coughing. Then it progressed to sneezing and a runny nose. I looked up the symptoms. As I've been telling people, in this day and age it's COVID until proven otherwise."
One of the tools that officials rely on to determine whether the coronavirus situation is improving in the state is hospitalization data. Unlike testing, which might be limited or takes days to report results, hospitalizations can help give officials a real-time snapshot of how many people are severely ill with COVID-19.
The Florida Agency for Health Care Administration reports the number of patients hospitalized statewide with a "primary diagnosis of COVID." The data, which is updated at least every hour, does not distinguish between the number of COVID-19 patients in hospital intensive care units and those in acute-care beds, which require less attention from nurses.