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COVID vaccine live updates: Here’s what to know in South Carolina on Dec. 1

·3 min read

We’re tracking the most up-to-date information about the coronavirus and vaccines in South Carolina. Check back for updates.

More than 450 new COVID-19 cases reported in SC

At least 735,496 people have tested positive for the coronavirus and 12,308 have died in South Carolina since March 2020, according to state health officials.

The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control on Wednesday, Dec. 1, reported 488 new COVID-19 cases and 14 coronavirus-related deaths. There were also 318 probable cases and nine probable deaths, data show.

At least 431 people in the state were reported hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Dec. 1, including 115 patients being treated in intensive care units and 60 on ventilators. Nearly 5% of hospitalizations across the state are coronavirus-related, data shows.

As of Dec. 1, 7.4% of COVID-19 tests were reported positive. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said 5% or lower means there is a low level of community spread.

Fifty percent of South Carolinians eligible to receive a coronavirus vaccine are fully vaccinated, and 58% have received at least one dose, according to health officials.

Judge blocks COVID-19 vaccine mandate for health workers. How it impacts SC

A federal judge has blocked efforts by President Joe Biden’s administration to require healthcare workers to get vaccinated against COVID-19 — a ruling that impacts South Carolina after Attorney General Alan Wilson joined a lawsuit challenging the move, The State reports.

“If the executive branch is allowed to usurp the power of the legislative branch to make laws, two of the three powers conferred by our Constitution would be in the same hands,” Louisiana U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty wrote in a preliminary injunction Nov. 30, according to The Daily Advertiser.

“If human nature and history teach anything, it is that civil liberties face grave risks when governments proclaim indefinite states of emergency,” Doughty added.

Biden’s mandate, which would require healthcare workers to be fully vaccinated by Jan. 4, received pushback from leaders across several states who sued to stop it from being enforced. Wilson cheered the judge’s decision.

“The Biden Administration has struck out in court yet again,” he said in a statement Tuesday, according to The State. “Our brave healthcare workers should not be subjected to such overreach by a president who wishes to rule by force.”

SCDHEC ‘closely monitoring’ COVID-19 omicron variant

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control said it’s keeping a close eye on the newly discovered omicron COVID-19 variant, The State reported.

South African doctors first detected the variant last week, and cases have since been reported across the globe. The discovery also triggered new travel restrictions in several countries including the U.S., which has halted travel for non-citizen from eight African countries.

So far, DHEC officials said omicron hasn’t been reported in the Palmetto State.

“At this time, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and DHEC have not identified any cases in South Carolina through sequencing of randomly selected positive samples,” the state health agency said in a statement Monday, Nov. 29.

Public health officials are urging residents to get the COVID-19 vaccine if they haven’t already.

Omicron coronavirus variant is mysterious — but there’s some good news. What to know

How should Beaufort spend COVID-19 relief money? Residents can weigh in

The city of Beaufort has $6.5 million in COVID-19 relief funds coming its way and residents have a say in how the money will be spent, according to The Island Packet.

Residents have until Friday, Dec. 31, to submit ideas on how best to utilize the funds, which were made available via the American Rescue Plan signed into law by President Joe Biden. Preliminary plans announced by City Manager Bill Prokop last month include spending for infrastructure projects and affordable housing grants.

Residents can share their thoughts and comments on digital platform Civil Space, according to the newspaper.

Read the full story here.

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