DHEC: 238 new virus cases, 4 new deaths in South Carolina | Instant News

COLUMBIA, S.C. – On Friday, S.C. The Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) announced 238 new cases of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus, and 4 additional deaths.

This brings the number of people confirmed to have COVID-19 in South Carolina to 7,367 and those who died to 320.

All four deaths occurred in elderly individuals in Clarendon (1), Florence (1), and Greenville (2) districts.

The number of new cases by region is listed below.

Aiken (3), Allendale (3), Anderson (3), Barnwell (3), Beaufort (4), Berkeley (1), Charleston (16), Chester (4), Chesterfield (3), Clarendon (5), Darlington (14), Dillon (6), Dorchester (1), Fairfield (2), Florence (30), Greenville (31), Greenwood (2), Horry (9), Lancaster (3), Laurens (2), Lee (12), Lexington (12), Marion (1), Marlboro (1), Oconee (4), Orangeburg (4), Pickens (1), Richland (19), Saluda (1), Spartanburg (9), Sumter (4), Union (2), Williamsburg (15), York (8)

RELATED: Midlands man beats COVID-19, home after 8 weeks in hospital

The COVID-19 DHEC website is updated daily with a positive case map as well as the latest recommendations to protect against COVID-19.

Community Outreach Efforts and Engagement Efforts

DHEC said that they hosted a telebrief with African-American state publications to ask for their help in sharing prevention messages with their stakeholders. The agency said they depend on trusted community partners to help deliver timely and life-saving disease prevention messages to those who are most at risk of developing severe complications from COVID-19.

Contact Tracing

DHEC launches a contact browse web pages which illustrates how this activity was the main strategy in the war against COVID-19. The web page answers frequently asked questions about contact tracing, and, for those who are interested in joining the DHEC Contact Tracking team, individuals can submit forms to receive additional information.

RELATED: All South Carolina restaurants can reopen for in-store dining on Mondays

Positive Positive Test Trends Among COVID-19 Reported Cases

When South Carolina stepped up testing, officials said there would likely be more laboratory confirmed cases. On Friday, DHEC released a new chart showing trends in the percentage of COVID-19 cases relative to the number of tests carried out during the last 28 and 14 days, respectively. The calculation is the result of the number of positive tests reported in one day (for yesterday, 238) divided by the total number of tests conducted on the same day by the DHEC laboratory and private laboratories (for yesterday, 4,545), then multiplied by 100 to get positive percent (5.2% yesterday).

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When the positive percentage is high, this might indicate that there is not enough testing done to capture how much disease is in the community and testing may be focused on seriously ill people.

When the positive percent is low, this might indicate that more extensive testing is being done and the positive percent may more accurately reflect how many diseases there are in the community.

Updated Recovery Rate

Based on available symptom onset data, we have 5,087 people who tested positive for COVID-19, DHEC estimates that as of May 4, 81 percent of people had recovered from the disease and 19 percent remained ill. This estimate is updated on our website every Tuesday and Friday.

Demographic Data Updated

Today’s web update is included updated demographic data for positive cases and deaths related to COVID-19. Monitoring demographic information can help direct information and resources to high-risk populations and identify gaps that need to be further investigated or focused.

Hospital Bed Capacity

As of this morning, DHEC said 3,388 inpatient hospital beds were available and 6,622 were in use, which was 66.15% utilization rates of hospital beds throughout the state. Of the 6,674 inpatient beds currently in use, 460 are occupied by patients who have tested positive or are being investigated for COVID-19.

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

Test it in South Carolina

On May 7, the DHEC Public Health Laboratory conducted 19,733 tests for COVID-19. Of this test, 2,616 were positive and 17,117 were negative. A total of 78,290 total tests by the DHEC Public Health Laboratory and private laboratories have been carried out in the state.

RELATED: South Carolina will double the virus test, making nursing homes a priority

Kasing by Regency and Postal Code

DHEC interactive map updated to include the latest COVID-19 cases confirmed and estimated by the county and ZIP code. Case estimates represent possible cases based on evidence that for each known COVID-19 case, there may be up to 9 people with the virus who remain unidentified in the community.

How South Carolinians Can Protect Yourself

DHEC says evidence is increasing about high rates of infection in people who have no symptoms and don’t know they are contagious. This puts everyone at risk of contracting the virus or unconsciously transmitting it to others.

RELATED: Studies say new strains of coronavirus are more contagious

South Carolina residents are encouraged to stay at home and minimize contact with people outside their household to prevent the spread of disease.

Other steps that must be taken by the public include:

  • Practicing social distance
  • Wear a mask when in a public place
  • Avoid touching items that are frequently touched
  • Wash your hands regularly
  • Monitoring symptoms

RELATED: Experts worry that the CDC will be ruled out in the coronavirus response

Anyone who is concerned about their health should contact their health care provider or use telehealth services provided by several health care systems. For telehealth options and the latest information on DHEC COVID-19 response efforts, please visit scdhec.gov/COVID-19.

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

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