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SC logs over 4,500 new coronavirus cases as Palmetto State approached 4 million tests

DHEC logs 4,576 new cases, 52 more deaths

  • Updated
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MUSC clinical laboratory scientist Elizabeth Champion-Lyons sets up the i2000SR Architect Plus Immunoassay machine for calibration. The machine runs immunotherapy antibody testing.

South Carolina confirmed another 4,576 new coronavirus cases Saturday, bringing the state to over 320,000 cases as it approached 4 million COVID-19 tests.

It's only the second day that the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control has confirmed more than 4,500 new cases, and it comes one day after Friday's record of 4,986.

Over 50,000 new cases have been confirmed in the past two weeks, just a fraction of the time — over four months — that it took the Palmetto State to rack up its first 50,000 cases.

Statewide numbers

New cases reported: 4,576, which is 2,796 percent higher than the 158 tallied on March 31, the day Gov. Henry McMaster ordered nonessential businesses to close.

Total cases in S.C.: 320,105, plus 29,979 probable cases

New deaths reported: 52

Total deaths in S.C.: 5,267 confirmed, 491 probable

Total tests in S.C.: 3,995,219

Hospitalized patients: 2,383

Percent of positive tests, 7-day average: 31.5 percent. Five percent of tests or fewer returning positive results is a good sign the virus' spread is slowing, researchers say.

Hardest-hit areas

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According to data from DHEC, the top counties for new coronavirus cases reported Saturday were Greenville, 723; Richland, 348; and Spartanburg, 312.

What about tri-county?

Charleston County had 250 new cases; Berkeley, 121; and Dorchester, 107.

Deaths

Two of the 52 deaths reported Saturday were patients aged 35 to 64, and the rest were 65 and older.

They lived in Aiken, Charleston, Chesterfield, Dorchester, Florence, Greenville, Horry, Jasper, Kershaw, Lancaster, lee, Lexington, Marion, Oconee, Pickens, Richland, Spartanburg and York counties.

Hospitalizations

Of the 2,383 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 on Saturday, 457 were in intensive care and 243 were on ventilators.

What do experts say?

Authorities continue to urge South Carolinians to take precautions, such as wearing masks or other face coverings, social distancing and frequently washing hands.

They also urge anyone who believes they’ve been exposed to the virus or who is developing symptoms to get tested. Those out in the community or not able to socially distance should get tested monthly, DHEC advised.

Go to scdhec.gov/findatest to find a testing site in your area.

Reach Sara Coello at 843-937-5705 and follow her on Twitter @smlcoello.

Reporter

Sara Coello has covered the Charleston area's justice system for The Post and Courier since September 2019. She previously covered crime and courts at The Dallas Morning News.

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