MIAMI (CBSMiami) — Late Friday evening, the Florida Department of Health announced the death of a second person in Miami-Dade County related to the coronavirus.
Authorities did not identify that victim.
Earlier in the day, the State Health Department’s website revealed that the county had recorded its first death.
The state did not release details of the death or the age and gender of the person and the circumstances surrounding what happened.
]The Mayors of Miami and Miami-Dade tell CBS4 that they are both saddened by news that Miami-Dade has recorded its first death of a person from the coronavirus.
But those Mayors also tell CBS4’s Peter D’Oench that it was vitally important that the city and county took steps as soon as they could to curb COVID-19.
Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez said, “I am very saddened by the first death in Miami-Dade and I do not expect this to be the last one. We have 79 people hospitalized and 20 are in critical condition. The death rate is 1 1/2 percent. The death does not surprise me but I am very sad and my heart goes out to his or her loved ones.”
Gimenez told D’Oench “We have 2.8 million people in the county. We now have 79 hospitalized with COVID-19 which is a very small percentage. I never want to get to the point where we have more people who need hospitals and hospital beds than we have room for. We never want to get to the point where we have more critical patients who need ventilators than we can provide. That’s what happened in Italy and why there was such a high mortality rate.”
Miami Mayor Francis Suarez said, “Obviously this is very sad news and that is why the City has been so proactive on this issue from the first day. Remember we canceled major events like the Ultra Music Festival. Obviously Miami-Dade County has the highest number of cases in the state of Florida. That’s why we implemented a stay at home order and implemented a curfew. We are asking that people stay at home so we can pass this as soon as possible.”
Suarez said testing had been accelerated at Marlins Park and he said at-home testing for the elderly was being done. To register for testing at Marlins Park or find out about testing at home, Miami residents should call the city’s Covid-19 testing center hotline at (305) 960-5050.
CBS4 also spoke with residents in downtown Miami.
Nearly everyone did not want to stop because of their concerns about social distancing and getting close to our news crew. Two residents did stop and we spoke with them from a distance.
David Dixon said, “It is quite tragic and heartbreaking that we don’t have more accessibility to get testing. The death is quite tragic and heartbreaking but I am not surprised. Right now I am wiping everything down. I am washing my hands and everything I can. I am doing everything I can every day that is possible.”
While walking his Welsh Terrier in downtown Miami, Allen Moseley said, “I am not surprised by the death. This is sad and I realize it could be higher. This was something I expected. I hope now that older people will listen and not get out. I have an older mother I am keeping in quarantine. I am not letting her out. I am worried. I was watching TV and saw a story about a 45-year-old person who died in New York. So I am going to be very careful.”
Current Curfews In South Florida
Drive-Through Testing Locations
Coronavirus, Pandemic, Quarantine, Social Distancing: All The Terms You Need To Know
Washing Your Hands Is Best Defense Against Coronavirus, Not A Facemask
Track The Spread Of The Coronavirus In Real Time
Think You Have Coronavirus? Call Florida’s COVID-19 Hotline Before Going To Doctor Or ER