It’s Thursday, April 9th - and NBC 6 has the top stories you need to know for the day.
No. 1 - The city of Miami issued a measure Wednesday ordering all people at grocery stores, construction sites and more to wear face masks to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
The order states all employees and customers at grocery stores, pharmacies, retail food facilities and restaurants should wear a mask at all times. The order also applies to people performing construction on job sites. Last week, the city of Miami Beach issued a similar order, and Miramar, Aventura, and Cutler Bay issued orders this week. Oakland Park, Key West and Plantation have not signed anything at this point but are encouraging residents to do so.
No. 2 - At least seven residents from the Atria Willow Wood senior center who have died from COVID-19 complications. The facility says a total of 20 residents and one staff member have tested positive for the virus as of April 6.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and the medical team he sent to inspect the facility allege Atria allowed construction workers and some staff to mix in with the residents without proper controls last month, which allowed the spread of the virus. Atria's management called that accusation “unfair.” NBC 6 spoke with some family members at facilities across South Florida, who expressed their concerns during the growing pandemic.
No. 3 - Florida's coronavirus-related death toll climbed past 300 Wednesday, as the number of confirmed cases in the state reached nearly 15,700.
The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Florida rose to 15,698, according to figures released by the state's department of health. Miami-Dade continued to be Florida's hardest-hit county, with 5,461 cases, about 36 percent of the state's total. Broward County was next with 2,365, followed by Palm Beach with 1,224. Monroe County had 52 cases.
No. 4 - Florida is providing very detailed information to the public on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic -- who is affected and where they live or died -- perhaps more than any state in the nation.
But one of the most precise bits of information - the number of positive cases found in each ZIP code - can be misleading. NBC 6’s Tony Pipitone takes a look at why some locations are showing more than others, and why that’s not always the whole story.
No. 5 - As companies race to get rapid COVID-19 tests approved by the Food and Drug Administration, one in South Florida says theirs can produce quick results that can get people back to work and help those on the front lines.
The test, called COVID-Rapid, screens blood for antibodies and can identify who was previously infected and may have already developed immunity to the virus. The company that manufactures it, Abaccus Pharma International, says tens of thousands of tests are currently in a warehouse in Pompano Beach waiting to be distributed. NBC 6 spoke with the company’s CEO in an interview you will see Only on 6.
No. 6 - Weatherwise, another day of near record heat is forecasted for South Florida on Thursday before wet weather arrives to end the work week. Keep your NBC 6 app handy for push alerts on any severe weather as well as First Alert Doppler 6000.