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SC reaches milestone of more than 1 million COVID-19 vaccine doses administered

DHEC logs 583 new cases, 18 deaths

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A nurse with the Fetter Health Care Network gives a COVID-19 vaccine to a patient at Greater St. James AME Church in Summerville on Thursday, February 4, 2021. File/Lauren Petracca/Staff

As of this week, more than 1 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been given in the Palmetto State. 

The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control said 1,003,558 total doses of Pfizer and Moderna vaccines have been given in the state as of March 2.

More than 990,000 South Carolina residents have been vaccinated.

DHEC announced this week the arrival of the state's first allocation of about 41,100 doses of the Johnson & Johnson single-dose vaccine. 

State epidemiologist Dr. Linda Bell said it is believed the new vaccine will speed up vaccination efforts across the state because it is single-dose and can be stored easily at refrigerated temperatures for several months. 

"When it's your turn, I recommend you get any vaccine offered to you," Bell said. "Pfizer, Moderna, Janssen vaccines are all safe and effective at preventing severe illness and deaths."

Statewide numbers

New cases reported: 583 confirmed, 291 probable.

Total cases in S.C.: 446,169 confirmed, 73,827 probable.

Percent positive: 9.6 percent.

New deaths reported: 18 confirmed, 26 probable.

Total deaths in S.C.: 7,626 confirmed, 994 probable.

Percent of ICU beds filled: 71.2 percent.

How does S.C. rank in vaccines administered per 100,000 people? 

44th as of March 2, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  

Hardest-hit areas

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In the total number of newly confirmed cases, Greenville (91), Lexington (46) and Horry (45) counties saw the highest totals.

What about the tri-county?

Charleston County had 33 new cases on March 3 while Berkeley counted 25 and Dorchester had 16.

Deaths

Four of the new confirmed deaths reported were among people age 35 to 64, the remainder were patients age 65 and older. 

Hospitalizations

Of the 706 COVID-19 patients hospitalized as of March 3, 190 were in the ICU and 86 were using ventilators.

Long-term care facilities

There have been 19,105 confirmed coronavirus cases in nursing homes and assisted-living facilities: 11,831 residents and 7,274 staff workers, according to DHEC data. That's a 4 percent increase of cases in two weeks.

So far, 1,861 residents have died from the virus, a mortality rate of 16 percent. Twenty-nine workers also have died. Together, they account for 25 percent of deaths in the state, the data from Feb. 28 shows.

Of the 688 facilities DHEC monitored, the virus has been found in 502. There are active outbreaks at 154 of them, a 21 percent decrease in two weeks.

Some type of visitation — indoor, outdoor or both — is allowed at 462 facilities; 218 do not allow it; eight did not report.

What do experts say?

Experts at DHEC said getting tested for COVID-19 is one step people can take to slow the spread of the virus in the community. It is also recommended that people wear a cloth face mask that covers the mouth and nose when around others and in public, physical distance when possible and get vaccinated. 

DHEC said it will likely be summer before enough of the population is vaccinated and current public health precautions can be relaxed. Until 70 to 80 percent of the population is vaccinated, people should take the same daily precautions that protect against COVID-19, even if they have been vaccinated. 

Representatives with the DHEC Care Line answer general questions about COVID-19 from 7 a.m.-7 p.m. each day at 855-472-3432.

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