According to South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), since July 22, the federal government has required hospitals nationwide to report data directly to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through a new TeleTracking system, which replaces the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s National Healthcare Safety Network system that had been used by hospitals for reporting data throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
With the TeleTracking system now implemented by South Carolina hospitals, DHEC is now able to resume reporting key information.
On Tuesday, DHEC reported that there are a total of 1,448 ICU beds of which 329 are available. Currently there are 1,119 in use (77.28% utilization rate).
There are 1,575 COVID-19 patients hospitalized, 401 are in ICU with 256 patients ventilated.
Currently, the TeleTracking system asks hospitals to report all of their available beds as one total number, not broken down by bed type as the NHSN system had. As a result, the hospitals’ total number of beds reported includes pediatric beds, neonatal intensive care unit (ICU) bassinets, psychiatric beds, labor and delivery beds, rehabilitation beds and others. As a practical matter, not all of these bed types could be used for caring for adult patients hospitalized with COVID-19, or other medical issues.
DHEC officials stated they are working with the S.C. Hospital Association to create a new process for gathering inpatient bed availability and occupancy from each hospital in the state, as this is the reporting metric that best provides the number of hospital beds available for caring for adult COVID-19 patients.
South Carolina, along with multiple other states, are also working in close coordination with federal partners to improve the new TeleTracking system’s reporting structure in order to provide the most accurate and actionable data possible.
DHEC also reported 1,573 new confirmed cases and 18 new probable cases of COVID-19. There were 52 additional confirmed deaths and seven new probable deaths.
This brings the total number of confirmed deaths in SC to 1,505, and 60 probable deaths.
As of yesterday, a total of 723,260 tests have been conducted in the state. See a detailed breakdown of tests in South Carolina on the Data and Projections webpage. DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory is operating extended hours and is testing specimens seven days a week, and the Public Health Laboratory’s current timeframe for providing results to health care providers is 24-48 hours.
The total number of individual test results reported to DHEC yesterday statewide was 8,689 (not including antibody tests) and the percent positive was 18.1%.
For the latest information related to COVID-19 visit scdhec.gov/COVID-19. Visit scdmh.net for stress, anxiety and mental health resources from the S.C. Department of Mental Health.