SC Coronavirus: Projected Death Toll Skyrockets As Cases Climb

In total, 283 people have died while 6,757 people have tested positive for coronavirus in South Carolina.

South Carolina may not be past the coronavirus peak after all, according to the latest projections from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), a leading model for COVID-19 used by South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC).

In the last few hours, the projected death toll has more than tripled — from projecting 361 total COVID-19 deaths in South Carolina to 1,112 total deaths by Aug 1.

Now as we’ve noted many times before — these projections have been all over the map in the last four weeks. In early April, IHME estimated that 1,093 people in South Carolina would die from COVID-19 by Aug. 1. That number changed several times, and decreased as low as 217 by mid-April.

IHME – which has been criticized –  is now predicting the peak for COVID-19 deaths in South Carolina will be May 6 through May 8. Earlier models showed the virus peaked in April.

The dramatic change comes just days after Gov. Henry McMaster lifted the work-or-home order and allowed for restaurants to re-open for outdoor seating.

According to IHME, South Carolinians have eased up on their social distancing in the last few weeks — increasing average mobility by 6 percent since April 11.

On Monday, SCDHEC reported 135 new cases and 8 additional deaths. In April, the average number of daily cases was 170 and 6 deaths daily.

“Six of those deaths occurred in elderly individuals in Clarendon (1), Greenville (2), Horry (1), and Richland (2) counties, and two of the deaths occurred in middle-aged individuals from Clarendon (1) and Marlboro (1) counties,” SCDHEC said Monday

In total, 283 people have died while 6,757 people have tested positive for coronavirus in South Carolina.

SCDHEC updated its projections Monday as well.

“The projections currently indicate that South Carolina may see almost 1,000 new cases per week by mid-May,” the SCDHEC news release said. “The total number of cases is estimated to grow to 9,652 confirmed cases on May 23.”

However, South Carolina is improving its testing capabilities. Despite the fact that SC ranks at the bottom of the list (No. 47 in the U.S. as of yesterday) when it comes to testing per capita, SCDHEC released new information showing that the percentage of positive cases is getting lower, which “indicates widespread testing is occurring.”


On Monday, Bloomberg reported some good news — scientists in the Netherlands have”created a monoclonal antibody that can defeat the new coronavirus in the lab.” Though promising, more testing is needed to confirm the results of the study, Bloomberg reported.



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