Polk County’s latest uptick in COVID-19 cases has peaked. The number of new cases has shown a downward trend over the last four weeks after increasing steadily over a four-month period, according to weekly tallies reported by the Florida Department of Health and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The proportion of people in Polk County whose COVID-19 tests turn out positive is nearly one in four, which is higher than the state average, Fox 13 News reports. While the prevalent Omicron variants are not as virulent as previous strains, patients say it’s no picnic. Reporter Ken Suarez interviews Lakeland Regional Health’s Dr. Hal […]
Polk is among a growing number of Florida counties where the Centers for Disease Control is recommending indoor masking as the number of infections here has risen steadily from a low of 230 case in the last week of March to 2,116 last week.
Polk County doctors and health organizations say they are seeing an unexpected and unseasonal rise in flu and other respiratory viruses, News Channel 8 reports. Polk is one of two Florida counties reporting “moderate flu activity” for the last week in April, and patients are having trouble finding Tamiflu, the station reports. Physicians recommend flu […]
U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle, a 35-year-old Lakeland native, is in the national spotlight after her ruling struck down the Biden administration’s mandate requiring masks on public transportation, CNN reports. Mizelle, the 2005 valedictorian at Lakeland Christian School, was appointed to the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida by former President […]
Two months after the omicron variant of COVID-19 peaked in Polk County, the rate of new infections has plunged to its lowest level since the early months of the pandemic, according to the latest weekly report from the Florida Department of Health. The testing positivity rate last week was the lowest reported ever.
RICK OLIVO, who founded the troupe that evolved into Lakeland Community Theatre, taught generations of visual artists and created the model for Lakeland’s Swansation sculptures, died Saturday at age 74. COVID-19 cases in Polk County declined for a seventh straight week to the kinds of levels seen in the weeks before the omicron surge; testing […]
BOOK BAN: The effort to remove 16 books from Polk school libraries is an initiative of the Florida Citizens Alliance, The Ledger reports in a subscribers-only story. The non-profit organization has worked to ban certain books in schools throughout Florida for five years and prompted the state law that allows any citizen, not just parents […]
The latest reports tracking COVID-19 in Polk County contain mixed messages: New infections declined for a second straight week after the omicron strain brought record levels. Hospitalizations at Lakeland Regional Health were down slightly Monday from week-ago levels. But deaths in Polk and throughout Florida continue rising.
HOSPITAL EMPLOYEE VACCINES: Today is the deadline for health-care facilities to comply with federal rules requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for employees who haven’t received an exemption. Lakeland Regional Health, like other Polk hospitals, issued a statement suggesting it is ready to follow the regulations but not mentioning penalties for employees who don’t comply. (Subscribers-only story) COLD […]