S.C. reports nearly 200 COVID-19 cases

VIDEO: S.C. investigating 22 more cases of COVID-19; State total at 195

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - As of Sunday afternoon, the number of COVID-19 cases in South Carolina totaled 195.

One week earlier, on March 15, the total stood at only 28. The state’s first two cases were reported on March 6.

The state has recorded three COVID-19-related deaths. One of the three was a patient in Charleston County.

The 195 cases, 22 of which were new as of Sunday’s update, extend across 33 of the state’s 46 counties. Four new cases were reported in Charleston County, and two new cases were reported in Beaufort County. Berkeley and Colleton Counties both had one new case each.

A Charleston retirement community announced Sunday two of its residents tested positive for COVID-19 after returning from international travel. The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control does not provide detailed information about each individual case, so it was not immediately clear whether those two cases were included in the four new cases in Charleston County reported on Sunday.

With Sunday’s new cases, here’s a county breakdown of the totals:

  • Kershaw: 44
  • Richland: 29
  • Greenville: 19
  • Beaufort: 14
  • Charleston: 13
  • Lexington: 12
  • Horry: 11
  • Anderson: 10
  • Darlington: 5
  • Lancaster: 5
  • York: 4
  • Greenwood: 3
  • Orangeburg: 3
  • Sumter: 3
  • Berkeley: 2
  • Spartanburg: 2
  • Abbeville: 1
  • Aiken: 1
  • Calhoun: 1
  • Clarendon: 1
  • Colleton: 1
  • Dillon: 1
  • Dorchester: 1
  • Edgefield: 1
  • Fairfield: 1
  • Florence: 1
  • Hampton: 1
  • Jasper: 1
  • Lee: 1
  • Marlboro: 1
  • Newberry: 1
  • Saluda: 1

As of Sunday, South Carolina reported fewer cases than its three neighboring states. The latest data showed Georgia with 620 positive cases and 25 deaths; North Carolina with 255 cases and no deaths; and Florida with 1,007 cases and 13 deaths.

The latest numbers on the CDC’s website, posted on Friday, showed a total of 15,219 cases in the U.S. and 201 deaths.

Charleston County leaders urge people to take COVID-19 seriously

Leaders from across Charleston County held a news conference Sunday afternoon and urged people to stay home.

Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg said doctors have said the uncontrolled spread of COVID-19 “would be nothing less than a death sentence for thousands of our friends and family members” across the Lowcountry.

“This is the time. We got to get serious,” Tecklenburg said. “And, and you can be a hero. All you got to do is stay home. Be a hero at home and be smart.”

Mount Pleasant Mayor Will Haynie warned against the “storm-party mentality,” referring to parties often organized just before a major hurricane heads toward the Atlantic coast.

“This virus is a solid storm, and it is already here,” Haynie said. “We already know that it has had contact with my church. We already know that my pastor in a hospital in my family. If you think that doesn’t hit close to home, I don’t know what does.”

DHEC: ‘This will take all of us working together’

DHEC continues to urge people to practice daily precautions.

“This will be an extended response and it will take all of us working together to stop the spread of this virus,” DHEC physician Dr. Brannon Traxler said. “We want people to be prepared for more cases to occur and to continue to listen to and follow recommendations from public health officials.”

residents can take the following preparedness recommendations:

  • Know the signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and what to do if you become symptomatic
  • If you're sick, stay home from work, school, and public events
  • Regularly wash your hands with soap and water
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue or your elbow
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick
  • Don’t share personal items
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces
  • Set up a separate room for sick household members
  • Check in with family and friends who live alone, especially those who may be in a high-risk group

DHEC has a public information line staffed from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day. You can call 1-855-472-3432 to get answers to your questions about COVID-19.

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