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Citrus County has its first coronavirus case.

She is a 60-year-old woman, according to the Florida Department of Health website. She is being isolated and will continue to remain isolated until cleared by public health officials.

The new case now brings the Florida total number of confirmed cases to 106 with seven more Florida residents diagnosed positive for the virus but isolated outside the state.

Over the weekend the number of Floridians who have died from the virus rose to four.

There have been 478 negative coronavirus test results in Florida with 221 test cases still pending.

The FDOH is not releasing any additional information about the first Citrus County case other than the agency is still investigating whether travel is related to the positive test results.

Ernesto "TitoRubio, Citrus County health department director, previously told the Chronicle that when Citrus County has its first case information would be limited.

The Department of Health in Citrus County told the Chronicle it is working closely with state officials.

"The epidemiological investigation (on the Citrus County case) is ongoing and the Florida Department of Health in Citrus County will continue to work with the Florida Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and our partners to ensure that local plans, resources and capabilities are in place to respond to a widespread outbreak and lessen the impacts on Citrus County," the DOH in Citrus County told the Chronicle.
"As always, the Department of Health is urging residents to stay informed on how to protect themselves and their communities from COVID-19 by visiting www.FloridaHealth.gov/COVID-19for the latest information," the DOH in Citrus County said.

The FDOH continues to advise county residents take precautions and that they are educated about the virus.

The virus can spread from person to person through small droplets from the nose or mouth, including when an individual coughs or sneezes.

These droplets can be inhaled by another person or can land on objects and surfaces. Other people may contract COVID-19 by touching these objects or surfaces, then touching their eyes, nose or mouth, according to the FDOH.

Symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Symptoms may appear in as few as two days or as many as 14 days following exposure. Most people recover from the coronavirus without needing special treatment. The elderly and those with underlying medical problems like high blood pressure, heart problems and diabetes are more likely to develop serious illness, according to the FDOH.

There is currently no vaccine to prevent infection. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus. The Department recommends everyday preventive actions to help stop the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick;
  • Staying home when you are sick and avoiding contact with persons in poor health;
  • Avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands;
  • Covering your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then disposing of the tissue;
  • Washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing;
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty; and
  • Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

For more updates, continue to monitor www.chronicleonline.com as well as the paper's Facebook page.

Contact Chronicle reporter Fred Hiers at fred.hiers@chronicleonline.com or 352-397-5914.

(24) comments


Why can't we get an alert like the Amber alert on our phones as soon as someone is positive and where they have been?


There are two cases reported in Florida and others pending. Don't expect the chronicle to keep you updated. Florida Dept of health website or any major local newspaper.


Fred, who do you contact first if you think you are infected. also, nice work on the article. vicki loeffler

CitrusCo Citizen

Yes, thank you Fred and keep up the good work. We all need accurate, current, important information so that we can make the right decisions and this seems to be the best source, for now.


It doesn't matter whether she (we don't need her name) travelled overseas or got infected locally or from outside of FL, we must know know where she has gone. It's extremely important to know so we can safe guard ourselves. My Dad is elderly. I do not want to take chances. It is Citrus County's responsibility to tell us where this person(s)'s whereabouts. Not doing so is a failure in a government. We need all hands on deck and work together to get everyone tested! No quibbling.


Donna, it doesn't matter at this point, the ginie is out of the bottle and were not puttng it back in. Social distincing , proper hygiene and folwing CDC recommendations are our best bet at this point. God bless

Sandy Cheeks

Exactly Thomas. It could be all over at this point. Some people are just carriers and don't show symptoms.

CitrusCo Citizen

Yup, pretty hard to put gin back in the bottle, Thomas. Thanks for the heads up!


The health department has not released any other information than what we wrote about. In our latest story, they say they are still working to discover how she was infected. https://www.chronicleonline.com/news/coronavirus/coronavirus-now-in-citrus-emergency-declaration-expected/article_887e4e3a-66e6-11ea-8801-6fed084b2013.html

(Edited by staff.)


I want to know if she voted at the Beverly Hills early voting site.


A doctor and his wife from Citrus County were on the Diamond Princess cruise ship that was quarantined off the coast of Japan. Was this woman who tested positive the one on the cruise ship or a totally unrelated case? The public needs to know at least that much.


None of us who were on the ship have ever been sick. We are all older than the infected woman. We are happy to be home and safe.

CitrusCo Citizen

You are very lucky. This virus doesn't discriminate against race, ethnicity, religious preference, gender, sexual identity, etc. Anyone is a target, although its favorite victims are the elderly and vulnerable. You escaped by the skin of your teeth. Keep eating those green and yellow FRESH vetegables, and get good sleep to build up your own immunity.


Completely agree with AGardner. We need to know where they have been so others can take precautionary measures.


Yes! Were they at Public in front of me? At the Post Office in line with others? Or at Walgreens coughing and spreading? WE NEED TO KNOW THEIR TRAVEL History before we all are infected, PLEASE.


The Sunday Chronicle has conflicting article ... closest to Citrus is Pasco and Alachua... says Facebook has false info .. I got my info from the Chronicle Facebook posting???


The Chronicle has update the story. It would appear at the time it went to print they were not aware.


We need to know if it is travel related.


Until widespread testing is done and people can be tested on a regular basis. No one knows how may people have the coronavirus. The first 5-7 days there are no symptoms, so those people aren't quarantined. Secondly. due to lack of test,only only high profile cases are tested. Which means the virus is spreading and no one will know until testing is made readily available. asymptomatic means some people, probably younger people can have no symptoms, spread the disease without ever being tested. Everyone needs to take precautions, especially areas where touching and handling things with frequency occurs like gas pumps, dining condiments at restaurants. Just use common sense.

County Native

Was this a high profile case? What distinguishes it as that? All the jargon from everyone is confusing.


Will there be an announcement about where she has been? I understand completely in regards to a thing else that is kept private, but there are vulnerable people for which this information is important.


Same here


Agree. Hope there is a plan to share the travels out of and within Citrus County. No need to divulge a name, but the places visited could be helpful.

CitrusCo Citizen

I guess we just have to wait and see if a "cluster" of cases emerge by Thursday or Friday of this week (after 2-3 days of contagion with no symptoms) and then MAYBE we'll be able to figure out the general location of this first victim. We're on our own here, folks! I was shocked at the number of public events requiring masses of people jammed together on the Chronicle's local news today. People just don't get it yet and the germs are spreading rapidly as we speak.

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