COVID-19 in SC: Demographic data


COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – DHEC has released an analysis of COVID-19 data compiled as of May 26, 2020.


The first two weeks of April saw a dramatic increase in COVID-19 cases, nearing 1,300 over the week of April 11. Cases began to decrease from mid April to early May, before a two week period of increase from May 16 to 23. The final week of May saw a large spike, with 1,750 cases: the highest weekly report since the beginning of the pandemic.

DHEC reports that the average age of a COVID-19 patient is 48.2, with the majority of cases appearing in individuals ages 51-60. Cases have been reported in patients as young as less than one month old, and as old as 105 years old.

Of note, the age group with the most prevalence of infection has a death rate of only 8.6%. The majority of deaths occur in those over 81 years old. Over half of all reported COVID-19 related deaths were in individuals over 71 years old. However, the average age of patients that died of COVID-19 related causes is 75.2.

According to DHEC, 12.2% more women have tested positive for COVID-19 than men. However, 5% more men have died from COVID-19 related causes than women.

While African Americans represent only 43% of the cases reported to DHEC, they account for 50% of COVID-19 related deaths. This is in comparison to the 41% of COVID-19 cases represented by whites, who account for 42% of COVID-19 related deaths. This data indicates that around 4.19% of whites infected with COVID-19 will die, compared to roughly 5.07% of blacks.

Other notable findings include DHEC’s report that based upon data collected between April 3 and June 1, 1,299 healthcare workers statewide have tested positive for COVID-19.

DHEC concluded that overall, available data suggests an 85% recovery rate for patients diagnosed with COVID-19. DHEC’s criteria for recovery is as follows:

  • Hospitalized individuals: No reported adverse outcome as of >32 days since onset of illness.
  • Hospitalization unknown: No reported adverse outcome as of >32 days since onset of illness.
  • Non-hospitalized individuals: No reported adverse outcome as of >14 days since onset of illness.

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