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DHEC: Virus cases at 6,626 in SC as deaths increase to 275

On Sunday, DHEC announced 141 new cases of COVID-19, along with 8 deaths

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) Sunday announced 141 new cases of the  coronavirus (COVID-19) and 8 additional deaths.

This brings the total number of people confirmed to have COVID-19 in South Carolina to 6,626 and those who have died to 275.

The eight deaths occurred in elderly individuals from Berkeley (1), Clarendon (1), Greenville (1), Horry (1), Lexington (1), Richland (2), and Spartanburg (1) counties.

The number of new cases by county are listed below.
Abbeville (2), Aiken (3), Allendale (1), Anderson (2), Barnwell (1), Berkeley (1), Charleston (2), Chester (2), Clarendon (11), Darlington (5), Dillon (5), Dorchester (1), Edgefield (1), Fairfield (26), Florence (7), Georgetown (1), Greenville (9), Greenwood (2), Horry (3), Kershaw (2), Lancaster (1), Lexington (9), Marlboro (1), Newberry (2), Oconee (1), Orangeburg (6), Richland (18), Saluda (3), Spartanburg (6), Sumter (3), Williamsburg (2), York (2) 

DHEC’s COVID-19 webpage is updated daily with a map of positive cases as well as the most current recommendations for protecting against COVID-19.

DHEC launched a public service announcement campaign that enlists the assistance of local and state influencers to encourage residents to do their part to help stop the spread of COVID-19. The campaign also seeks to bring increased awareness among groups such as older residents and African Americans, who are at higher risk of severe illness due the disease.

Current PSA videos feature Representative James Clyburn, Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin, and Dr. Linda Bell, DHEC State Epidemiologist.

Hospital Bed Capacity

 As of this morning, 5,016 hospital beds are available and 6,389 are utilized, which is a 56% statewide hospital bed utilization rate. Of the 6,389 beds currently used, 310 are occupied by patients who have either tested positive or are under investigation for COVID-19 

Testing in South Carolina

As of May 3, DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory has conducted 16,860 tests for COVID-19. Of these tests, 2,280 were positive and 14,580 were negative. A total of 64,188 total tests by both DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory and private labs have been conducted in the state. 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.

Cases by County and ZIP Code

DHEC’s interactive maps were updated to include the latest confirmed and estimated COVID-19 cases by county and ZIP code. The estimated cases represent possible cases based on evidence that for every known case of COVID-19, there could be up to 9 people with the virus who remain unidentified in the community. By including estimates, we hope to better convey the risk of disease spread within our communities.

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How South Carolinians Can Protect Themselves

DHEC says evidence is increasing about the high rates of infection in people who do not have symptoms and don’t know they are infectious. This places everyone at risk of getting the virus or unknowingly transmitting it to someone else. 

South Carolinians are encouraged to stay home and minimize contact with people outside their households to prevent the spread of the disease. 

Other steps the public should take include:

  • Practicing social distancing
  • Wearing a mask while out in public
  • Avoiding touching frequently touched items
  • Regularly washing your hands
  • Monitoring for symptoms

Anyone with concerns about their health should reach out to their healthcare provider or use the telehealth services provided by several health care systems. For telehealth options and the latest information about DHEC’s COVID-19 response efforts, please visit scdhec.gov/COVID-19. 

Visit scdmh.net for stress, anxiety and mental health resources from the S.C. Department of Mental Health.

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