The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control reported nearly 500 new cases of the coronavirus on April 8 and 20 more deaths.
More than 460,000 COVID-19 cases have been confirmed in the Palmetto State since the start of the pandemic last year. But health care agencies are continuing efforts to increase testing and make vaccines available to all individuals who want them.
On April 13, Fetter Health and DHEC will co-host a free vaccine clinic at Trident Technical College's North Charleston campus. Moderna shots will be administered from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Building 920.
Those who want a shot can schedule an appointment at scdhec.gov/vaxlocator or by calling DHEC's COVID-19 vaccine information line at 866-365-8110. On-site registration is also an option. People are asked to take with them a valid picture ID and an insurance, Medicaid or Medicare card, if available.
Go to FetterCovid19screening.org/vaccine-clinic for more information.
New cases reported: 495 confirmed, 450 probable.
Total cases in S.C.: 469,467 confirmed, 90,130 probable.
Percent positive: 5.6 percent.
New deaths reported: 20 confirmed, 4 probable.
Total deaths in S.C.: 8,138 confirmed, 1,099 probable.
Percent of ICU beds filled: 69.4 percent.
How does S.C. rank in vaccines administered per 100,000 people?
44th as of April 6, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
In the total number of newly confirmed cases, Greenville County (64), Charleston County (53) and Richland County (45) saw the highest totals.
What about the tri-county?
Charleston County had 53 new cases on April 8, while Berkeley had 27 and Dorchester had 19.
Eight of the new confirmed deaths reported were patients age 35 to 64, and 12 were 65 and older.
Of the 500 COVID-19 patients hospitalized as of April 8, 131 were in the ICU and 63 were using ventilators.
What do experts say?
Health professionals in the Palmetto State say in order to beat COVID-19, residents should get the vaccine as soon as an appointment is available.
Getting tested is still essential in slowing the spread of the virus in the community, along with wearing a mask and social distancing. Testing locations can be found at scdhec.gov/FindATest.