DHEC data shows COVID-19 testing surge following holiday weekend

Coronavirus

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WBTW) — The number of COVID-19 tests administered in South Carolina surged early last week, according to data released Monday by the state’s health agency.

Results typically come two days after a COVID-19 test is administered, and are then reported to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, which then releases testing information to the public two days later.

About 20,000 tests a day were included in DHEC’s daily reports last week. On Saturday, the agency received more than 140,000 test results. 

DHEC had received about 40,000 test results a day over the last few weeks. Many testing sites were closed over the Labor Day weekend. 

DHEC’s Saturday report includes 4,183 new, confirmed cases, 1,173 probable cases, 35 confirmed deaths and 34 probable COVID-19-caused deaths. Of the 140,411 new tests reported to the state, 4.9% were positive for the virus. Among the new, confirmed deaths were one person in Florence County, five people in Horry County and one person in Marion County.

Sunday’s report includes 3,935 new, confirmed cases, 1,629 probable cases, 35 confirmed deaths and three probable COVID-19-caused deaths. Of 53,095 new tests reported to the state, 15.3% were positive for the virus. Among those deaths were the confirmed death of one person in Dillon County, the confirmed deaths of five people in Horry County, the probable COVID-19-caused death of one person in Horry County and the probable COVID-19-caused death of one person in Marion County.

Monday’s report includes 3,474 new, confirmed cases, 369 probable cases, 45 confirmed deaths and six probable COVID-19-caused deaths. Of 49,119 new tests reported to the state, 10.1% were positive for the virus. Among those deaths were the confirmed deaths of two people in Darlington County, the confirmed death of one person in Horry County, the probable COVID-19-caused death of one person in Horry County, the confirmed death of one person in Marion County and the confirmed death of one person in Marlboro County.

Data updated Sunday shows that hospital bed occupancy is up 1.7% over the last week. The number of patients who had COVID-19 had increased by .9%, the number of COVID-19 patients on a ventilator was up by 7.2%, the number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care units was 6.9% and hospital staffing shortages were up by 24%. 

Hospitals in Dillon and Marlboro counties were at 100% capacity. Florence County hospitals were 97.6% full, and Horry County hospitals were 91.5% full. 

Statewide, 79.43% of inpatient beds were occupied, with 27.97% of those being used for COVID-19 patients. About 81.87% of ICU beds were full, and 43.84% of ventilators were in use.

As of Saturday, 58.5% of eligible South Carolina residents have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and 49.6% had completed vaccination. 

New case counts for local counties are as follows:

Darlington – 13 confirmed, six probable

Dillon – 24 confirmed, one probable

Florence – 76 confirmed, 10 probable

Horry – 193 confirmed, eight probable

Marion – 16 confirmed

Marlboro – 15 confirmed

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