COLUMBIA, S.C. (WSAV) – A child from the Midlands region has died due to COVID-19, marking South Carolina’s first pediatric death associated with the virus.
S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control reported Saturday the child was under the age of five. Further information will not be disclosed at this time.
“It is heart-wrenching to lose a child under any circumstances, and especially so during a time when we have all lost so much already,” said DHEC Public Health Director Dr. Joan Duwve. “Our state is in a dire situation and we will continue to mourn the loss of parents, grandparents, children, friends and neighbors until each and every one of us steps up to do what is right, not just for ourselves but for others.”
“Choosing to wear a mask and maintain physical distance today will not only help change the course of the pandemic in South Carolina, it will help save the lives of those around us,” she said, adding that no one is immune to the deadly disease.
Saturday also marks the highest number of positive cases of COVID-19 in a day at 2,239, DHEC reported. That surpasses the previous record by more than 300 cases.
And at 22.2%, the percent positive for Friday is also the highest to date.
DHEC and Gov. Henry McMaster have recently stressed the fact that younger South Carolinians continue to contract the disease more and more.
There has been a 436.5% increase in newly reported COVID-19 cases among the 21-30 age group since June 1, representing 22% of total confirmed cases in the state. According to DHEC, that is the largest percentage by age group.
It’s why McMaster has prohibited alcohol sales at bars and restaurants after 11 p.m. — a measure that will go into effect Saturday.
“This measured, carefully tailored approach will lessen the opportunity for South Carolinians to put themselves and their loved ones in harm’s way,” he said in a news conference Friday.