Orange County

Nursing conference canceled at Orange County Convention Center as COVID-19 cases surge

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — A big nursing conference at the Orange County Convention Center that would bring in thousands of visitors and millions of dollars to the region has canceled its event.

A spokesperson for the convention center said the Association of Perioperative Registered Nurses convention was canceled because the nurses need to work right now, but there are dozens of other conventions still in the books.

Conventions range from 100 attendees to more than 130,000.

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Since January, there have been 21 events canceled with more than 300,000 attendees and a $667 million impact.

The economic impact of the canceled nurses convention was more than $12 million, and bring about 5,000 people.

The convention center never closed last year during the peak of the pandemic, even though conventions were canceled by the organizers from March through July 2020.

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For more than a year, the convention center was used as a COVID-19 testing and vaccination site.

There were talks of using it to house COVID-19 once hospitals reached capacity. The executive director of the convention center said that’s not being discussed at this point.

Karen Parks

Karen Parks,

Karen Parks is a reporter at WFTV.

Adam Poulisse,

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.