‘We’ve seen a plateau': Central Florida doctors say fight against COVID-19 shows encouraging signs

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Doctors and state officials said there are some encouraging signs in the fight against COVID-19 in Central Florida and beyond.

“We’ve seen a plateau that we are incredibly grateful for,” said Dr. David Moorhead, executive vice president of AdventHealth.

Back to school: When do classes resume in Central Florida?

After days and weeks of climbing hospitalizations related to COVID-19, AdventHealth said its internal data is showing a positive trend.

“We are ready, and we are thankful that we have seen the flattening in the last week,” said Dr. Scott Brady, senior vice president of ambulatory systems with AdventHealth.

Doctors said the number of COVID-19 patients admitted to hospitals in Central Florida seems to be leveling off.

Read: Walmart to close stores on Thanksgiving Day

For almost a month, the number of people admitted to Orange County hospitals weekly went up, but in the last seven days, the number of patients seeking care for COVID-19 has decreased significantly in the last week.

“Each of our counties that we look after in advent health has either seen a flattening or a little decrease in the last 6 to 7 days,” Brady said.

Seminole County has also seen a drastic drop in cases in the last 14 days.

During a roundtable discussion Tuesday, Gov. Ron DeSantis said Central Florida could have hit the peak or is close, and that some cities are only seeing single-digit positivity rates in the last week.

The briefing comes off the heels of a trip to an Orlando where protesters interrupted him as he spoke at a blood bank.

Read: Florida reports 136 more coronavirus-related deaths, including 29 locally; almost 10K new cases

Orange County has the highest number of cases within Central Florida with 23,584 reported infected as of Monday.

The governor stated over the weekend that Florida would receive 30,000 vials of Remdesivir to treat COVID-19 patients.

Hospitals in Central Florida say they have capacity, and think they will be able to handle it even if the numbers surge.

Right now, Central Florida is around 26% availability, more than the average across the state. Doctors said in the last few months they have had a high number of strokes and heart attacks because people are waiting too long for treatment.

The state has brought in additional staff hospitals to handle patient care. They also secured additional remdesivir, a drug helping treat COVID-19 patients, for hospitals across the state.

Read: Protesters interrupt governor’s COVID-19 briefing at Orlando blood bank

Watch the full roundtable below:

WATCH LIVE: Gov. Ron DeSantis gives coronavirus update

WATCH LIVE: Gov. Ron DeSantis gives coronavirus update. Read more: at.wftv.com/32FqzCt

Posted by WFTV Channel 9 on Tuesday, July 21, 2020
Shannon Butler

Shannon Butler, WFTV.com

Shannon joined the Eyewitness News team in 2013.

Adam Poulisse, WFTV.com

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.

Christopher Boyce, WFTV.com

Christopher Boyce joined WFTV in January of 2019.