DHEC: Half of South Carolinians have completed COVID-19 vaccination


COLUMBIA, S.C. (WBTW) — Half of eligible South Carolinians have completed COVID-19 vaccination, according to information released Thursday from the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.

About 58.8% of eligible residents have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. According to CDC data, SC currently has the 2nd worst full vaccination rate among people 12+ on the east coast. Georgia is the only state that is worse.

The update came as the state continued to record a lower amount of new, daily cases than in previous weeks. There were 2,865 new, confirmed cases announced by DHEC on Thursday, along with 1,441 probable ones, 41 confirmed deaths and eight probable COVID-19-caused deaths. Of 33,528 new tests reported to the state, 11.4% were positive for the virus.

Among those new deaths was the confirmed death of one person in Darlington County, the probable COVID-19-caused death of one person in Florence County, the confirmed deaths of four people in Horry County and the confirmed death of one person in Marlboro County.

Thursday’s update brings the state’s totals to 656,341 new, confirmed cases, 157,913 probable cases, 10,041 confirmed deaths and 1,491 probable COVID-19-caused deaths.

“Reaching this 50 percent benchmark is a testament to the countless hours DHEC and partner staff have put into these life-saving doses into arms,” Edward Simmer, the director of DHEC, said in an announcement. “It’s also indicative of our outreach efforts, work with local and state leaders, and so many others who understand how important vaccination is to ending this pandemic. That said, the mission is not over because the pandemic is not over. We need more South Carolinians to step up and get vaccinated so we can stamp COVID out once and for all.”

Gov. Henry McMaster also applauded the milestone, although said in the announcement that “we have more work to do.”

As of information updated Thursday, 85% of 27,201 cases reported in August were among people who were not fully vaccinated. Out of 611 deaths, 75% were not fully vaccinated.

Of the state’s 11,570 inpatient hospital beds, 84.35% were in use, as of Thursday. Of those, 26.31% were being used by COVID-19 patients. About 81.% of intensive care unit beds were in use, and 42.61% of ventilators were in use.

New case counts for local counties are as follows:

Darlington – 25 confirmed, 23 probable

Dillon – 21 confirmed, 14 probable

Florence – 65 confirmed, 28 probable

Horry – 143 confirmed, 153 probable

Marion – 15 confirmed, four probable

Marlboro – 15 confirmed, 16 probable

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