COLUMBIA, S.C. (WSAV) – The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) is investigating four new possible cases of the coronavirus, bringing the state total number to six.
On Sunday afternoon, DHEC made the announcement that four presumptive positive cases were identified after testing was done at the DHEC Public Health Laboratory. These are in addition to the two presumptive positive cases announced on Friday.
Two of the new cases are direct contacts, meaning having had close, face-to-face contact, with the Camden elderly woman announced on Friday. One of these new patients is a woman who has been hospitalized for unrelated reasons.
The second new patient who was in contact with the elderly Camden woman is an elderly man. He was temporarily admitted to a healthcare facility and was later discharged. He is now isolated at home.
The third new case is a woman from Camden with no known connection to the other presumptive positive patients in the area. She was evaluated at a healthcare facility and is now isolated at home.
The fourth new patient is a man from Spartanburg County with no known connection to any other presumptive positive case. DHEC says he recently traveled to Italy. He is currently isolated at home.
DHEC also released an update on the original two presumptive positive cases in South Caroline.
DHEC says that the elderly woman from Camden was transferred to a healthcare facility in the Midlands on Friday to receive a higher level of care. She remains isolated.
The second patient, the woman from Charleston County, is now symptom-free and continuing to self-monitor.
“Presumptive positive” means that samples from these individuals tested positive for COVID-19 at DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory, however, the results are also required to be confirmed by the CDC. This process can take 24-48 hours once the CDC receives the samples.
DHEC says as of Sunday afternoon, their lab has tested a total of 18 people for coronavirus, including the six above. The remaining 12 tests are negative.
Governor Henry McMaster released the following statement about the new possible COVID-19 cases:
“Healthcare authorities in South Carolina are following established protocols and procedures in addressing the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. There is no cause for public alarm or speculation. It’s important to remember that each individual is responsible for their own actions and personal hygiene. If you feel sick, stay home and contact your doctor. Or from your home, you can consult with a doctor for free with MUSC’s online web site at: https://MUSC.care. South Carolinians should continue to follow recommendations and information provided by official sources.”Gov. Henry McMaster
DHEC said it does not recommend closing schools or canceling public events at this time. Precautions in daily routines such as practicing good hygiene, washing your hands, and covering your cough are recommended.
WSAV is bringing you the latest on COVID-19 on air and online HERE.