As often happens, the daily COVID-19 reports from the Florida Department of Health bring glimpses of light behind the dark news of new cases and more deaths. The proportion of Polk tests returning positive results is at 6.2% and has declined steadily in recent days. At the same time, there have been two new deaths reported in Polk, both involving elder-care facilities.

A look at the trend lines behind Polk’s numbers shows that the number of new cases has started declining again in recent days and the numbers of people tested is ticking upward. (See the charts below.)

The two Polk residents whose deaths were reported today were an 85-year-old woman whose case was first recorded on April 16 and a 94-year-old woman whose case was first recorded on April 26.

Today’s report also shows 17 new hospitalizations in Polk after a three-day span when only one new person was reported hospitalized with COVID-19.

Latest numbers

This morning’s COVID-19 updates from the Florida Department of Health compared with the previous day:

  • Polk confirmed cases: 547, an increase of 11
  • Lakeland confirmed cases: 224, an increase of 5
  • Polk deaths: 28, an increase of two
  • Polk hospitalizations: 178, an increase of 17

The numbers of confirmed cases and hospitalizations are cumulative and do not reflect how many people have recovered or have been released from the hospital.

Testing in Polk

  • Total tested: 8,263, an increase of 405 over the previous day. It was Polk’s second-highest day for new tests.
  • Positive: 547
  • Negative: 8,263
  • Inconclusive: 3
  • Await results: 5
  • Percent positive: 6.2%

The numbers of people being tested remains small compared with Polk County’s estimated population of 708,000 people. A shortage of test kits means that until recently only people showing severe symptoms and/or high risk were tested.


Today we update trend charts that we introduced on April 26. At that time, the trend line was falling for both new cases and new tests. Today’s charts show that new cases are falling again after a brief rise and that testing is trending upward after dipping in mid-April. The trend lines reflect a seven-day average.

Long-term care facilities

  • Cases involving Polk facilities: 131, an increase of 20 on Sunday, the last day a new report was published.
  • Deaths involving Polk facilities: 17, an increase of 2
  • Number of Polk facilities with reported cases: 8 | List

New Polk County data

The Florida Department of Health recently started releasing a new county-by-county series of charts. Today’s updates have not been issued yet. Here are Monday’s:

Click the image to view a larger version
Click the image to view a larger version

ZIP Codes

Cases in Lakeland ZIP codes:

33801: 15, unchanged
33803: 21, an increase of 2
33805: 40, an increase of 1
33809: 15, an increase of 1
33810: 21, unchanged
33811: 5, unchanged
33812: 5, unchanged
33813: 84, unchanged
33815: 9, unchanged

View an interactive ZIP code map here. To find local ZIP code data, click on the “Cases by Zip Code” tab below the map and then scroll to Polk and click. Learn how ZIP code data is reported.

Cases in Polk cities

  • Lakeland, 224
  • Winter Haven, 88
  • Davenport, 57
  • Kissimmee, 36*
  • Bartow, 30
  • Lake Wales, 24
  • Auburndale, 17
  • Haines City, 14
  • Mulberry, 10
  • Fort Meade, 9
  • Lake Alfred, 5
  • Frostproof, 4
  • Poinciana, 4
  • Dundee, 3
  • Eagle Lake, 2
  • Wahneta, 2
  • Kathleen, 2
  • Babson Park, 1
  • Bradley, 1
  • Champions Gate, 1
  • Cypress Gardens, 1
  • Indian Lakes Estates, 1
  • Polk City, 1
  • Lake Hamilton, 1
  • Lakeshore (formerly Fedhaven), 1
  • Waverly, 1

* While Kissimmee is in Osceola County, the Health Department classifies a portion of east Polk as Kissimmee. It maintains a separate number for the Osceola portion of Kissimmee.

Download the full Florida report released Tuesday.

Tracking the cases

SEND CORRECTIONS, questions, feedback or news tips:


Something went wrong. Please refresh the page and/or try again.

Barry Friedman founded in 2015 as the culmination of a career in print and digital journalism. Since 1982, he has used the tools of reporting, editing and content curation to help people in Lakeland understand their community better.

Leave a comment

Your Thoughts On This? (Comments are moderated; first and last name are required.)