Four more area COVID deaths, cases climb as governor extends stay at home order

By DEUCE NIVEN

tribdeuce@tabor-loris.com

     Two more COVID-19 associated deaths for Columbus County, another 216 confirmed coronavirus cases for Horry indicate the current coronavirus surge is not abating.

     This post will cover these topics and may be updated:

  • Governor, DHHS secretary: Stay home
  • Two new COVID deaths, four this week for Columbus
  • Virus claims two more in Horry, 256 new cases

Governor, DHHS secretary: Stay home

     Ordering a continuation of North Carolina’s Modified Stay at Home Order, through at least Jan. 29, Gov. Roy Cooper was joined by state Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen with a straightforward message Wednesday: Stay home.

     That order requires most North Carolinians to stay home between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

     Dr. Cohen issued a Secretarial Directive with stark warnings for North Carolinians to avoid indoor spaces without masks and gatherings between households.

     See the Secretarial Directive here.

     “We have turned the page on a new year – one that we’re hoping will bring better times. But as we know, the virus didn’t disappear at midnight on December 31,” Governor Cooper said. “In fact, in North Carolina, we have seen some of our highest case counts, percent positives, hospitalizations and ICU bed usage numbers in the past few days. No matter where you live, work, worship or play, COVID-19 remains a deadly threat, and we must treat it that way.”

     “We are in a very dangerous position,” Dr. Cohen said. “North Carolinians need to take immediate actions to save lives, slow the spread of the virus, and protect hospital capacity so that medical care is available to anyone who may need it, whether for COVID-19 or for any other reason.”

     Dr. Cohen’s directive comes as the state reports 84 counties as red in the COVID-19 County Alert System, including Columbus County that had gone from red to orange and has returned to red with the highest level of COVID-19 impacts.

Two new COVID deaths, four this week for Columbus

     Two more Columbus County residents have been claimed by COVID-19, both from the Whiteville Zip Code, DHHS data shows.

     Those deaths come as 59 more Columbus residents have been confirmed as infected by the virus, bringing pandemic totals to 3,895 cases and 87 deaths.

     Whiteville, the Zip Code data shows, had the highest number of newly confirmed cases Wednesday, 20, followed by Tabor City with 14.

     North Carolina reported 6,952 new COVID infections Wednesday, and 80 associated deaths, bringing those pandemic totals to 582,348 and 7,076 respectively.

     Statewide 3,893 people were hospitalized due to the coronavirus Monday, up by 112 from Tuesday and again setting a pandemic record.

Virus claims two more in Horry, 256 new cases

     Two elderly Horry County residents who died on New Year’s Eve are the latest confirmed deaths resulting from COVID-19, South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control reported Wednesday.

     With another 256 Horry residents newly confirmed as infected by COVID-19, the county’s pandemic totals have reached 19,294 cases and 280 deaths.

     Zip Code data shows 26 of the newly confirmed cases from the Loris area, bringing that total to 1,182, with the Green Sea area recording a total of 153 cases for the second day in a row.

     South Carolina has recorded 306,204 COVID cases during the pandemic, 5,139 deaths, those numbers up by 4,037 and 71 respectively since Tuesday.

     Statewide 2,424 people were hospitalized due to the coronavirus Wednesday, that number up by 80 since Tuesday.

Updates

     Look for continuing coverage on local impacts from the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak here and in the Tabor-Loris Tribune in print and online.