DHEC announces changes to COVID-19 reporting
DHEC announces changes to COVID-19 reporting

DHEC announces changes to COVID-19 reporting

COLUMBIA, SC (WCSC) – State health officials change their March 1 COVID-19 test strategy.

Referring to the increase in the accuracy of home testing of COVID-19 and a decrease in the demand for drive-through PCR testing, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control says they will begin reducing test operations.

Officials say the availability, speed, and accuracy of rapid antigen testing allow individuals to test at any time and isolate if necessary.

As of March 15, the daily number of cases will no longer be reported due to home tests not being reported. Health authorities say they will continue to release hospitalizations and deaths weekly.

DHEC says the changes will continue to ensure that information and resources are available for families to make informed decisions, but still stresses that vaccinations are the most effective way to prevent COVID-19.

The changes to testing and reporting will take place in stages:

  • March 1-14 – DHEC will begin closing DHEC-managed vendor test sites in counties with five or more non-DHEC PCR test providers
  • March 15th Change the frequency and type of data reporting to once a week.
  • March 14 – April 1 Closure of DHEC-administered vendor test sites in counties with 2-4 non-DHEC PCR test providers.
  • April 1st Begin closure of DHEC-operated PCR except in counties where DHEC is the sole provider of PCR testing.

Health authorities say they will continue to update guidelines and responses based on conditions. They are expected to update contact tracking and school guidance next week.

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