As South Carolina performs fewer coronavirus tests than state health officials had hoped, the percent of tests that come back positive has remained high even as the rate of newly identified cases drops.
On Wednesday, the state Department of Health and Environmental Control logged 2,470 tests, over 20 percent of which — 505 — were positive.
DHEC has scheduled 241 mobile testing clinics through Oct. 17. Residents can go to scdhec.gov/covid19testing for information about getting tested at a mobile clinic or one of 222 permanent COVID-19 testing facilities.
New cases reported: 505
Total cases in S.C.: 112,643, plus 1,450 probable cases
New deaths reported: 42
Total deaths in S.C.: 2,451, plus 122 probable deaths
Hospitalized patients: 1,058
Percent of positive tests: 20.4 percent
Total tests in S.C.: 972,538
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Richland County had the state’s highest number of new daily cases at 77, DHEC said. Charleston County followed with 50, and Greenville County had 30.
What about tri-county?
Charleston County had 50 new cases, while Berkeley reported eight and Dorchester counted 11, DHEC said.
Three Charleston and three Dorchester resident deaths were reported on Wednesday.
In addition to the 42 confirmed deaths, DHEC is investigating three more that were possibly caused by COVID-19.
Four of the victims were aged 35 to 64, and 38 were 65 or older. They hailed from Anderson, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, Edgefield, Florence, Georgetown, Greenville, Greenwood, Hampton, Lancaster, Newberry, Oconee, Richland, Spartanburg, Sumter and York counties.
DHEC reported 1,058 COVID-19 patients were hospitalized as of Wednesday. Of these, 156 were on ventilators and 268 were in intensive care.
What do experts say?
Authorities continue to urge South Carolinians to avoid being indoors or within 6 feet of unmasked people. Several municipalities have formalized the request with local ordinances.
Reach Sara Coello at 843-937-5705 and follow her on Twitter @smlcoello.