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Florida Department of Health releases new guidelines for COVID-19 testing. Here’s how they compare with the CDC’s.

Dr. Joseph Ladapo speaks last Tuesday after being introduced by Gov. Ron DeSantis as Florida's new surgeon general. Image: The Florida Channel

The Florida Department of Health has released new COVID-19 testing guidelines aimed at reducing the demand for testing in the state. 

Only residents with symptoms of the virus who are considered high-risk should get tested according to the new recommendations.

That includes anyone who is 65 and older, has a medical condition like cancer, diabetes or chronic heart and lung problems, and/or who is pregnant or recently gave birth. 

All other individuals, even those who have come in contact with an infected person, are being encouraged to wait to get tested until symptoms appear.  

This new guidance which has been supported both by Governor Ron DeSantis and Florida Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo directly contradicts the CDC’s suggestions for testing. 

The CDC says anyone who has symptoms, has had contact with a symptomatic person, or who is not fully vaccinated and works or goes to school in high-risk environments should get a test.

Florida is currently experiencing a surge in new COVID cases due to the latest Omicron variant. A report out of the University of Florida predicts 80 percent of residents could become infected with the virus by the end of the wave.

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Danielle Prieur

About Danielle Prieur

Reporter & Fill-in Host

Danielle Prieur is a general assignment reporter at WMFE. You can hear her reporting on a daily basis on the station. She also fills-in as a host during the morning and afternoon drive times. Her reporting has been featured on NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and Vox. Danielle is originally from Rochester Hills, ... Read Full Bio »