Coronavirus Update: What you need to know Saturday, April 11 -Tribune

Catch up on today’s latest news about the COVID-19 pandemic.

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We will update this story throughout the day with the latest news about coronavirus and its effects in Sarasota-Manatee and across Florida.


As of Saturday morning, 18,494 people in Florida had tested positive for COVID-19, and there had been 438 deaths. You can also track coronavirus cases by ZIP code in Sarasota and Manatee counties.

11:57 a.m.: List of restaurants for takeout, delivery in Sarasota-Bradenton-Venice (updated 4/11)

See our massive, updated guide to takeout, delivery, closures and much more in the Sarasota-Manatee restaurant scene.

11:16 a.m.: 2 new deaths announced in Sarasota

Florida now has 18,494 people who have tested positive for COVID-19, according to the Florida Department of Health Saturday morning report. The number of COVID-19 deaths in Florida grew by 19 to 438. Two new deaths were reported in Sarasota County.

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See our complete coverage of the coronavirus outbreak

7:30 a.m.: Over half of state’s child care facilities are closed

Florida’s child care industry, consisting mostly of small businesses, was struggling financially long before the COVID-19 pandemic swept the nation. As of Wednesday, 57% of child care providers were closed, according to the department, many due to low enrollment and therefore low revenue. When the pandemic has run its course and parents return to work en masse, will there be enough child care providers?

7:15 a.m.: Churches to observe Easter services online

Area churches capitalize on technology to reach parishioners while practicing social distancing during Holy Week.

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– DeSantis says rapid testing is a game changer: On the day the number of deaths in Florida attributed to the coronavirus exceeded 400, the state expanded testing at three drive-through sites in Jacksonville, Orlando and Miami, and Gov. Ron DeSantis called rapid tests the state has acquired a game changer in the fight against COVID-19.

– Multiple residents test positive at Manatee County nursing home: Multiple residents at the Braden River Rehabilitation Center nursing home in Manatee County have contracted the coronavirus, adding to the 629 cases tied to long-term care facilities statewide.

– Florida unemployment numbers hide full story of frustration: According to contracts the state’s Department of Employment Opportunity recently signed with three call center companies, the agency has been answering only 2 percent of the thousands of calls it’s received, with wait times averaging more than six hours.

– List of restaurants for takeout, delivery in Sarasota-Bradenton-Venice: Here’s a list of dining options for Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte counties presented in alphabetical order, as well as information about temporary closures. We’ve also included bars, breweries and coffee shops that are filling to-go orders for customers.

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– Where to pick up unemployment forms in North Port: State Department of Economic Opportunity Reemployment Assistance Applications are now available in a variety of locations around North Port, as the city of North Port has partnered with the North Port Area Chamber of Commerce and faith based organizations around the city to make them available.

– Manatee extends curfew, Sarasota Sheriff says lockdown compliance has been good: Knight and other county officials said the community largely is complying with the governor’s order forcing people to stay in their homes except for essential business and activities.

– Sarasota libraries adapting to changing needs: Even with local library doors closed, Sarasota County librarians have been staying busy offering book and music suggestions, passing on technical help for people trying to use computer programs for the first time, making face masks and providing a human connection for those stuck alone during the pandemic.

– 705 new cases overnight, deaths at 390 on Friday morning: Florida added 705 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 since Thursday evening, according to the Florida Department of Health’s Friday morning update. Florida now has 17,531 people who have tested positive for COVID-19. The number of COVID-19 deaths in Florida grew to 390.

– MLB considering radical realignment for 2020 season: Grapefruit and Cactus leagues: Major League Baseball, assessing a myriad of proposals, has discussed a radical plan that would eliminate the traditional American and National Leagues for 2020, a high-ranking official told USA TODAY Sports, and realign all six divisions for an abbreviated season.

– Photo Gallery — Historic downtown Venice during coronavirus: See scenes in and around downtown Venice during the pandemic.

– Artist Series cancels remainder of season: Artist Series Concerts of Sarasota planned to reschedule the remaining programs on its 2019-20 calendar because of closures caused by the coronavirus, but with the exception of two events, it has now announced the rest of the season is canceled.

– Show off Sarasota with our collection of Zoom virtual backgrounds: After digging in our photo archives, here are some choice scenes, formatted perfectly for Zoom.

Ways you can help

If your finances are stable and you want to help others in the area who are not as fortunate, here are just three of the many ways you can give back:

~ Season of Sharing has been reactivated to help people in Sarasota, Manatee, DeSoto and Charlotte counties who have been impacted by the pandemic. Plus, there’s matching grants, so any donation you make is likely to be doubled.

~ The Gulf Coast Community Foundation and Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation have created an initiative to target hunger relief, homeless services and mental health care.

~ With an initial gift of $500,000 from an anonymous donor, the Manatee Community Foundation has established the Manatee County COVID-19 Community Response Fund to support the evolving needs of health and human service organizations.

Growth of COVID-19 cases in Florida

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