The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control reported nearly 16,600 new COVID-19 cases and nine new deaths related to the virus July 17-23.
New cases reported:16,570
Total cases in S.C.: 1,605,165
New deaths reported: nine
Total deaths in S.C.: 18,192
Percent of ICU beds filled (with COVID-19 and other patients): 63.8 percent
Percent positive: 25.7 percent
S.C. residents vaccinated
In South Carolina, 60.6 percent of people who are eligible for the vaccine have received at least one dose, and 52.6 percent of eligible residents are considered fully vaccinated against the coronavirus.
These numbers reflect all eligible residents in South Carolina, including young children. The latest data from DHEC shows 21.8 percent of children ages 5-11 have at least one vaccine dose and 1.6 percent of those under age 5 have received a shot.
Of the 538 COVID-19 patients hospitalized as of July 23, 77 were in the ICU and 23 were using ventilators.
What do experts say?
At a White House conference July 26 on the future of COVID-19 vaccines, some companies said they were looking to develop a couple of painless options: one that could deliver COVID-19 vaccine intranasally, through the nose, and one that has developed a patch with microneedles that could be applied and peeled off to deliver a vaccine dose through the skin.