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State reports 1,666 new COVID cases, Pee Dee 112
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State reports 1,666 new COVID cases, Pee Dee 112

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COVID-19

The COVID-19 virus

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control on Wednesday  announced 1,666 new confirmed cases and five new probable cases of the novel coronavirus COVID-19, 48 additional confirmed deaths and four new probable deaths.

Of the new confirmed cases, the Pee Dee accounted for 112 of the cases with Florence County leading the way with 44 confirmed cases followed by Darlington County with 18 cases, Williamsburg County with 15 cases, Chesterfield and Marion counties with eight each and Marlboro County with three cases.

Darlington, Florence and Williamsburg counties reported one confirmed death each.

This brings the total number of confirmed cases to 85,423 probable cases to 423, confirmed deaths to 1,551, and 64 probable deaths.

As of Tuesday, a total of 734,149 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 24-48 hours.

The total number of individual test results reported to DHEC Tuesday statewide was 8,360 (not including antibody tests) and the percent positive was 19.9%.

Currently, there are 105 mobile testing events scheduled through August 31 with new testing events added regularly. Find a mobile testing clinic event near you at scdhec.gov/covid19mobileclinics.

Residents can visit scdhec.gov/covid19testing for information about getting tested at one of 214 permanent COVID-19 testing facilities across the state.

Since July 22, the federal government has required hospitals nationwide to report data directly to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through a new TeleTracking system, which replaces the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s National Healthcare Safety Network system that had been used by hospitals for reporting data throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

Currently, the TeleTracking system asks hospitals to report all of their available beds as one total number, not broken down by bed type as the NHSN system had. Therefore, hospitals’ total number of beds reported includes pediatric beds, neonatal intensive care unit (ICU) bassinets, psychiatric beds, labor and delivery beds, rehabilitation beds and others.

As a practical matter, not all of these bed types could be used for caring for adult patients hospitalized with COVID-19, or other medical issues.

DHEC is working with the S.C. Hospital Association to create a new process for gathering inpatient bed availability and occupancy from each hospital in the state, as this is the reporting metric that best provides the number of hospital beds available for caring for adult COVID-19 patients.

South Carolina, along with multiple other states, are also working in close coordination with federal partners to improve the new TeleTracking system’s reporting structure in order to provide the most accurate and actionable data possible.

ICU beds: 1,451 total; 299 available; 1,152 in use (79.39%% utilization rate)

COVID-19 patients hospitalized: 1,596; 404 in ICU; 242 ventilated

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.

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