Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is winning the COVID marathon and helping build a strong Florida in the process. For months the media predicted that Florida would become the ‘new New York’ when it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic, beating their drums—and chests—at our Republican governor and his pro-growth economic policies. And yet their fear-filled prophecies have not materialized. Florida is successfully flattening the curve, the number of new COVID-19 cases is on the decline, the positivity rate has been below 10 percent for more than two weeks straight, and our economy is regaining strength.
Even after the “surge” this summer, Florida is still miles ahead of other densely populated states like New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and more, when it comes to the death rate from COVID-19. The state has more than sufficient hospital and ICU bed capacity to avoid the health care system from being overwhelmed, with some counties at above 90 percent bed availability.
Gov. DeSantis approached the COVID-19 pandemic with caution, not fear. His administration acted quickly to prioritize the protection of nursing homes, a decision that likely saved countless lives, yet has earned little appreciation from the media. His Executive Order expanding telehealth services for state employees ensure state workers can receive health care while continuing to social distance. And by signing HB 23 into law, Gov. DeSantis, with the Florida legislature, permanently increased all Floridians’ access to quality health care by allowing qualified out-of-state physicians to use telehealth services to treat those in the Sunshine State.