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Varicella (Chickenpox) in Florida

Florida Health

Disease Control

The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting health care seeking behavior, which may be impacting the diagnosis and reporting of varicella cases that are shown in this report. For more information on the COVID-19 pandemic in Florida, please visit FloridaHealthCOVID-19.gov.


March Key Points

26 Cases
No new
outbreaks
<1 year olds had
highest incidence rate
58% cases not
up-to-date or
unknown vaccinations status


The number of varicella cases reported in March 2021 increased from the previous month and remained below the previous 5-year average. Due to robust vaccination programs, there is no longer discernable seasonality for varicella cases in the United States.

A graph showing a summary of varicella cases reported by month in 2019 as compared to the previous 5-year average. In March 2021, 26 cases of varicella were reported, which is below the previous 5-year average.


In March 2021, 26 varicella cases were reported in 16 counties, outlined in black in the map below. From January 2020 through March 2021 the average county rate was highest in Northwest Florida

A map showing the previous 3-month average varicella rates per 100,000 population. Counties with one or more cases reported in March are ALACHUA BREVARD BROWARD COLLIER DADE DUVAL ESCAMBIA INDIAN RIVER JACKSON MARION ORANGE PALM BEACH PASCO POLK SEMINOLE VOLUSIA Counties with a rate of 0.01-0.08 per 100,000 population are: Brevard Miami-Dade Duval Hillsborough Manatee Sarasota Counties with a rate of 0.1-0.2 per 100,000 population are:  Alachua Broward Clay Collier Escambia Lake Lee Marion Orange Palm Beach Pasco Pinellas Polk St. Johns St. Lucie Seminole Volusia Counties with a rate of 0.3-0.7 per 100,000 population are: Indian River Jackson Leon


In 2021, 63 varicella cases were reported in 26 counties. The annual number of reported varicella cases decreased from 2016 to 2017. In 2020 and 2021, case counts are lower than those seen in previous years at this time.

A graph showing a summary of the total number of varicella cases reported by year with an emphasis on 2019. In total for each year there have been: 741 in 2015; 733 in 2016; 656 in 2017; 853 in 2018; 984 in 2019; 346 in 2020; and 63 in 2021.


In March, 3 cases were transmitted within households and no cases were associated with an outbreak,. For most varicella cases, exposure to other known cases is not identied. In Florida, transmission setting is not routinely identied for non-outbreak cases, resulting in 58% of cases reporting unknown setting in March.

People with shingles infection can transmit the virus that causes varicella to people without immunity. In March, 7 cases reported having contact with someone diagnosed with shingles during their exposure period

A graph showing a bar graph of total cases compared to household associated cases and outbreak associated cases for March 2021 and the previous 3-month average. In March 2021, no outbreak-associated cases were identified.


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