UWF going virtual after Thanksgiving

University of West Florida President Dr. Martha Saunders told Inweekly that university’s instruction will go “straight online after Thanksgiving.”  Those students who can’t go home will still be allowed to stay in the campus dorms

We trying to get our students to get tested before they go home,” said Dr. Saunders, and she added later, “We’ve extended our winter break to the 19th of January.”

The complete interview with Dr. Saunders will be in our Nov. 19 issue.

According to the latest Florida Department of Health reports, Escambia County had 784 new cases for week ending Nov. 14 and nine more deaths. The new cases are up 26% from the first week of November and the positivity rate is up 2%—from 6.99% to 9.06%. New hospitalizations increased by 39. The previous week we had 22 new hospitalizations.

In October, Escambia County only had 67 new hospitalizations. We’ve already had 61 this month.

Our new cases tied to long-term care facilities is also up. In October, the new nursing home cases totaled 52.  The November count is 57 new cases.

The death total for November is 16.


7-Nov 14-Nov
Total 14334 15118 784
Florida 12843 13519 676
Non-FL 1491 1599 108
Hosp. 931 970 39
Deaths 279 288 9
LTC 1217 1274 57
Correct 911 912 1


The Escambia County administration offered no changes in policy to deal with new outbreak in its Friday, Nov. 13 COVID-19 update. However, it did share the CDC guidance for Thanksgiving:

Thanksgiving Guidance

  • With less than two weeks before Thanksgiving, the Center for Disease Control issued reminders for celebrating a safe holiday. The CDC offers recommendations on:
    • Wearing a mask
    • Staying six feet away from non-household members
    • Frequent hand washing
    • Being safe at gatherings, including bringing your own plates, cups and utensils
    • Safety when hosting a gathering, including holding activities outdoors
    • Travel
  • The CDC urges taking part in alternative holiday traditions, including:
    • Hosting a virtual Thanksgiving gathering
    • Watching parades and sporting events at home instead of in person
    • Shopping online instead of at stores