COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina's health agency, DHEC, is reporting nearly 1,000 new virus cases and is imploring the public to wear masks and social distance to stop the spread of the disease.
The number of new cases released Thursday stood at 987, with 4 additional deaths. This brings the total number of confirmed cases to 21,533, probable cases to 15, confirmed deaths to 621, and zero probable deaths.
“Every one of us has a role to play in stopping COVID-19," said Dr. Linda Bell, the state epidemiologist. "This virus does not spread on its own. It’s spread around our state by infected people who carry it wherever they go – their work, the supermarket, the post office, a friend’s house. By not following public health precautions, many are putting all at risk."
"It is essential that each of us, every day, wear a mask in public and stay physically distanced from others."
"We understand that what we’re continuing to ask of everyone is not easy and that many are tired of hearing the same warnings and of taking the same daily precautions, but this virus does not take a day off. Every day that we don’t all do our part, we are extending the duration of illnesses, missed work, hospitalizations and deaths in our state."
"There is no vaccine for COVID-19. There are only individual behaviors and actions we must all maintain that help stop its spread."
The number of new confirmed cases by county are listed below.
Aiken (10), Anderson (14), Bamberg (3), Beaufort (48), Berkeley (24), Calhoun (1), Charleston (139), Chester (1), Chesterfield (4), Cherokee (1), Colleton (3), Clarendon (2), Darlington (4), Dillon (10), Dorchester (20), Fairfield (5), Florence (16), Georgetown (42), Greenville (169), Greenwood (1), Horry (128), Jasper (9), Kershaw (16), Lancaster (7), Laurens (10), Lee (7), Lexington (45), Marion (5), Marlboro (4), Newberry (6), Oconee (5), Orangeburg (13), Pickens (19), Richland (79), Saluda (3), Spartanburg (42), Sumter (34), Union (2), Williamsburg (7), York (29)
The number of new probable cases are listed below. Greenville (2), Kershaw (2), Laurens (1), Lexington (1), Pickens (1), Richland (2)
Testing in South Carolina
As of yesterday, a total of 313,210 tests have been conducted in the state. See a detailed breakdown of tests in South Carolina on the Data and Projections webpage. DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory is operating extended hours and is testing specimens seven days a week. The Public Health Laboratory’s current timeframe for providing results to health care providers is 24-48 hours.
Free COVID-19 Testing Event to be Held at Benedict College
Residents are invited to attend a free testing event at Benedict College’s Charles W. Johnson Stadium in Columbia, S.C. The event will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. this Friday and Saturday.
This free event is open to the public and will provide local communities in the Columbia area access to free drive-up testing and essential supplies to help lessen the risk of exposure to COVID-19.
For those needing assistance traveling to the event, THE COMET is offering a reservation, dial-a-ride service for people getting tested. Call 803-255-7124 30 minutes in advance and to secure a ride to and from the testing site. For more information about the event, click here.
DHEC continues to work with community partners to increase testing in communities across the state. Find a mobile testing clinic event near you at scdhec.gov/covid19mobileclinics.
You can also get tested at one of 171 permanent COVID-19 testing facilities across the state. Visit scdhec.gov/covid19testing for more information.
Percent Positive Test Trends among Reported COVID-19 Cases
The total number of individuals tested yesterday statewide was 6,854 (not including antibody tests) and the percent positive was 14.4%. When the percent positive is low, it may indicate that more widespread testing is being performed and the percent positive may more accurately reflect how much disease is present in the community.
Hospital Bed Occupancy
As of this morning, 3,583 inpatient hospital beds are available and 7,021 are in use, which is a 70.59% statewide hospital bed utilization rate. Of the 7,021 inpatient beds currently used, 626 are occupied by patients who have either tested positive or are under investigation for COVID-19.