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Lexington nursing home has 26 COVID-19 deaths, second-highest in SC

Recent numbers released by DHEC this week track the number of cases and deaths among residents and staff in these facilities.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — A Lexington nursing home has 26 confirmed COVID-19 deaths.

That's the highest in the Midlands and the second highest in South Carolina nursing homes.

Recent numbers released by the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) this week track the number of cases and deaths among residents and staff in these facilities.

All nursing homes are required to report COVID-19 infections to DHEC.

The agency says staff in long term care facilities are at increased risk of exposure to COVID-19, as are residents, who are considered high risk for infection, serious illness, and death from the virus. 

RELATED: South Carolina to test all nursing home residents and staff for COVID-19

In total, 341 nursing home, rehab and community residential care facilities in South Carolina have reported positive cases of COVID-19, with 5,943 total cases and 821 deaths among residents and staff.

These 5 South Carolina facilities have the most reported deaths among their residents:

1. Sandpiper Rehab & Nursing (community residential care facility) - 1049 Anna Knapp Blvd Mt.Pleasant, SC 29464 - 27 deaths

2. Lexington Medical Center Extended Care (nursing home) - 815 Old Cherokee Rd, Lexington, SC 29072 - 26 deaths

3. Pruitt Health - Ridgeway (nursing home) - 213 Tanglewood Ct, Ridgeway, SC 29130 - 18 deaths

4. Magnolia Manor - Inman (nursing home) - 63 Blackstock Rd, Inman, SC 29349 - 17 deaths

5. NHC HealthCare Mauldin (nursing home) - 850 E Butler Rd, Greenville, SC 29607 - 16 deaths

6. Windsor Manor Nursing Home - 5583 Summerton Hwy, Manning, SC 29102 - 16 deaths

Top 5 in the Midlands:

1. Lexington Medical Center Extended Care (nursing home) - 815 Old Cherokee Rd, Lexington, SC 29072 - 26 deaths

2. Pruitt Health - Ridgeway (nursing home) - 213 Tanglewood Ct, Ridgeway, SC 29130 - 18 deaths

3. Windsor Manor Nursing Home - 5583 Summerton Hwy, Manning, SC 29102 - 16 deaths

4. NHC HealthCare Lexington (nursing home) - 2993 Sunset Blvd, West Columbia, SC 29169 - 15 deaths

5. Midlands Health and Rehabilitation Center (nursing home) - 1007 N Kings St, Columbia, SC 29223 - 12 deaths

6. Pruitt Health - Blythewood (nursing home) - 1075 Heather Green Dr, Columbia, SC 29229 - 12 deaths

July 24, State Epidemiologist Dr. Linda Bell sent a letter to long-term care facility administrators updating testing guidance.  

In the letter, it provides current CDC recommendations for initial and repeat testing in these facilities.

In a statement, SCDHEC says, "Our regional staff around the state continue to work closely with these facilities to help answer questions, provide guidance and help ensure the recommended procedures are in place for protecting residents and the workers who care for them. Also, DHEC has also performed in-person infection control surveys at all 194 licensed nursing homes in the state. These infection control surveys were performed between June and July, and during those inspections, we were able to assess that appropriate disease prevention protocols were in place at each facility and to perform follow-up surveys at facilities when warranted."

Last month, Governor McMaster announced he's delaying reopening nursing homes because of COVID-19.

RELATED: Governor delays opening visitation at SC nursing homes

To help residents in these facilities cope during these trying times, 118 nursing homes in the state are receiving funding through a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' COVID-19 Communicative Technology grant.

The money helps the nursing homes purchase devices, like iPads, to allow residents to connect virtually with loved ones.

RELATED: Trump says more help coming for nursing homes during coronavirus pandemic

To view the full list of long-term care facilities with COVID-19 cases in South Carolina, click here.

*All data are provisional. Data reflects information being collected since April 3, 2020.

**Data is current as of 10am August 10, 2020.