SC leaders urge parents to vaccinate kids to prevent coronavirus complications | COVID-19 | #coronavirus | #kids. | #children

As schools across the country report clusters of coronavirus infections in newly reopened classrooms, South Carolina leaders urged parents to have their children protected with vaccines for other illnesses.

Many doctors’ offices saw fewer patients through the first spike of cases in spring and summer, leaving parents to follow through on required shots in the weeks before classrooms open their doors.

“Vaccination is one of the most successful public health interventions in history for reducing disease spread and preventing complications,” state epidemiologist Dr. Linda Bell said in a statement on Tuesday. “One of the few things we can do to protect ourselves from this deadly virus (COVID-19) is to stay as healthy as possible and avoid contracting vaccine-preventable diseases that can severely complicate the outcome for those who could become ill and also contract COVID-19.”

As of Tuesday, more than 100 mobile testing events had been scheduled through mid-October. Go to scdhec.gov/covid19mobileclinics for information about those events and scdhec.gov/covid19testing for a roster of permanent testing facilities.

Statewide numbers

Number of new cases reported: 691

Total number of cases in S.C.: 106,574, plus 1,098 probable cases

Number of new deaths reported: 47

Total number of deaths in S.C.: 2,230, plus 113 probable deaths

Number of hospitalized patients: 1,116

Percent of tests that were positive: 18.6 percent

Total number of tests in S.C.: 940,948

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Which areas are hardest hit?

Spartanburg County led the state with 65 new cases reported Tuesday, while Richland reported 62, Greenville tallied 48 and Charleston counted 43.

What’s happening in the tri-county region?

In addition to the 43 new cases in Charleston County, Berkeley reported 16 and Dorchester logged 22. One Berkeley County resident was reported to have died of the virus on Tuesday. In addition, two Charleston and one Dorchester residents also were reported to have died Tuesday. Authorities are investigating the deaths of one Berkeley and one Charleston County resident thought to have had COVID-19.

With local mask requirements peppered throughout the tri-county, Dorchester County extended its ordinance for unincorporated areas until the Sept. 8 County Council meeting. 

Deaths

Of the 47 deaths confirmed on Tuesday, nine were 35 to 64 years old and 38 were 65 or older. They lived in Aiken, Anderson, Berkeley, Charleston, Chester, Chesterfield, Darlington, Dorchester, Fairfield, Florence, Georgetown, Greenville, Greenwood, Horry, Laurens, Oconee, Orangeburg, Richland, Spartanburg, Sumter and Williamsburg counties.

Hospitalizations

The state Department of Health and Environmental Control reported that 1,116 COVID-19 patients were hospitalized as of Tuesday. Of these, 173 were on ventilators and 294 were in intensive care.

What do experts say?

Officials continue to urge basic precautions to help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus: social distancing, wearing a mask in public, avoiding group gatherings, regularly washing hands and staying home when sick.

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


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