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First confirmed cases of COVID-related child illness in SC; 1,952 new confirmed cases

This brings the total number of confirmed cases to 56,485, probable cases to 163, confirmed deaths to 950 and 11 probable deaths.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina health officials say they've recorded the two cases of a coronavirus related child illness in the state, the first time this complication has been seen in the state since the pandemic began. The news comes a day after the state recorded its first child death from COVID-19. 

The state also recorded its second-highest total of coronavirus cases since the outbreak began in March and a record number of hospitalizations. 

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) confirmed Sunday cases of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C). Two children are the first in the state with a confirmed diagnosis of MIS-C, a rare health condition recently recognized to occur in some children and teenagers who have contracted COVID-19 or been in contact with someone infected with the virus. 

One child is from the Midlands region and one is from the PeeDee region. Both are under the age of 10. To protect the privacy of the children and their families, no other information will be disclosed at this time.

“We continue to see more and more young people, especially those under 20, contracting and spreading COVID-19, and we know MIS-C is a threat to our youngest South Carolinians,” said Dr. Linda Bell, State Epidemiologist. “MIS-C is a serious health complication linked to COVID-19 and is all the more reason why we must stop the spread of this virus. Anyone and everyone is susceptible to COVID-19 as well as additional health risks associated with it, which is why all of us must stop the virus by wearing a mask and stay six feet away from others. These simple actions are how we protect ourselves and others, including our children.”

The first reports of this syndrome came from the United Kingdom in late April. Cases in the United States were first reported in New York City in early May.

On May 15, 2020, DHEC sent a health alert informing healthcare providers and facilities of the condition and requesting that all providers report suspected cases of MIS-C to the agency. Symptoms of MIS-C include fever, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, neck pain, rash, bloodshot eyes, and feeling tired. 

DHEC recommends parents and caregivers learn and watch for the signs for MIS-C in their children. Emergency warning signs of MIS-C include trouble breathing, chest pain or pressure that does not go away, confusion, inability to wake or stay awake, bluish lips or face, and severe abdominal pain. For more information about MIS-C, click here.

Latest Overall Numbers: 

There were 1,952 new confirmed cases and no new probable cases of the novel coronavirus COVID-19, 10 additional confirmed deaths and no new probable deaths. There are currently 1,472 hospital beds occupied by patients who have either tested positive or are under investigation for COVID-19, and 188 of those patients are on ventilators.

This brings the total number of confirmed cases to 56,485, probable cases to 163, confirmed deaths to 950 and 11 probable deaths.

Eight of the deaths occurred in elderly individuals from Anderson (1), Charleston (1), Chester (1), Clarendon (1), Greenville (2), Horry (1), and Lexington (1) counties, and two of the deaths occurred in middle-aged individuals from Lee (1) and Lexington (1), counties.

The number of new confirmed cases by county are listed below.

Abbeville (3), Aiken (62), Allendale (2), Anderson (19), Bamberg (13), Barnwell (3), Beaufort (66), Berkeley (93), Calhoun (8), Charleston (282), Cherokee (9), Chester (12), Chesterfield (11), Clarendon (6), Colleton (15), Darlington (16), Dillon (8), Dorchester (83), Edgefield (4), Fairfield (9), Florence (51), Georgetown (23), Greenville (216), Greenwood (32), Hampton (5), Horry (213), Jasper (7), Kershaw (13), Lancaster (23), Laurens (23), Lee (8), Lexington (109), Marion (17), Marlboro (5), McCormick (6), Newberry (26), Oconee (15), Orangeburg (36), Pickens (31), Richland (152), Saluda (9), Spartanburg (97), Sumter (51), Union (1), Williamsburg (6), York (53)

The graphic below shows the total number of daily cases since the virus began.

Credit: SCDHEC

Testing in South Carolina
As of Saturday, atotal of 538,022 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, and the Public Health Laboratory’s current timeframe for providing results to health care providers is 24-48 hours. 

Percent Positive Test Trends among Reported COVID-19 Cases
The total number of individual test results reported to DHEC Saturday statewide was 8,769 (not including antibody tests) and the percent positive of those tests was 22.3%. 

More than 75 Mobile Testing Clinics Scheduled Statewide
As part of our ongoing efforts to increase testing in underserved and rural communities across the state, DHEC is working with community partners to set up mobile testing clinics that bring testing to these communities. Currently, there are 79 mobile testing events scheduled through August 1 with new testing events added regularly. Find a mobile testing clinic event near you at scdhec.gov/covid19mobileclinics. 

Residents can also get tested at one of 180 permanent COVID-19 testing facilities across the state. Visit scdhec.gov/covid19testing for more information.

Hospital Bed Occupancy
As of Sunday morning, 2,890 inpatient hospital beds are available and 7,721 are in use, which is a 72.76% statewide hospital bed utilization rate. Of the 7,721 inpatient beds currently used, 1,472 are occupied by patients who have either tested positive or are under investigation for COVID-19.

This graphic below shows the daily hospital bed use related to COVID-19 in South Carolina. 

Credit: SCDHEC

For the latest information related to COVID-19 visit scdhec.gov/COVID-19. Visit scdmh.net for stress, anxiety and mental health resources from the S.C. Department of Mental Health.

*As new information is provided to the department, some changes in cases may occur. Cases are reported based on the person’s county of residence, as it is provided to the department. DHEC’s COVID-19 map will adjust to reflect any reclassified cases.