COVID-19

The COVID-19 virus

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) on Sunday confirmed the state’s first cases of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) associated with COVID-19.

Two children, including one from the Pee Dee, 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.

The other child is from the Midlands region. Both are under the age of 10. To protect the privacy of the children and their families, no other information is being 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, the 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 health care 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.

1,952 new cases reported

SC DHEC announced 1,952 new coronavirus cases Sunday – including 51 in Florence County – and 10 additional deaths.

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:

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) and York (53)

As of Saturday, a total of 538,022 tests have been conducted in the state. 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 to 48 hours.

The total number of individual test results reported Saturday to DHEC yesterday statewide was 8,769 (not including antibody tests) and the percent positive of those tests was 22.3%.

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, and 188 of those patients are on ventilators.

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