Staff reports | The White House on Wednesday revealed a new plan in the fight against COVID-19 aimed at ushering the country into a “new normal” as hospitalizations and new infections continue to plummet. The plan integrates four main goals: protecting against and treating COVID-19, preparing for new variants; avoiding shutdowns; and fighting the virus abroad, according to a report by The New York Times.

“Make no mistake, President [Joe] Biden will not accept just ‘living with Covid’ any more than we accept ‘living with’ cancer, Alzheimer’s, or AIDS,” the plan reads. “We will continue our work to stop the spread of the virus, blunt its impact on those who get infected, and deploy new treatments to dramatically reduce the occurrence of severe COVID-19 disease and deaths.”

The plan follows Biden’s State of the Union Address Tuesday night, during which he sketched out the next phase of the pandemic response, including a “test to treat” initiative seeking to provide patients with antiviral medications as soon as they learn they’re infected. Much of the strategy draws on actions national leaders are already taking. 

The plan is designed to get Americans out of crisis mode, Biden said. 

“I know you’re tired, frustrated and exhausted,” he said Tuesday. “But I also know this: because of the progress we’ve made — because of your resilience and the tools that we have been provided by this Congress — tonight I can say we are moving forward safely, back to more normal routines.”

Latest COVID-19 data

South Carolina health officials on Wednesday reported 417 total new cases of COVID-19, with 205 confirmed, and 17 new deaths, with 12 confirmed. 

With 3,327 test results reported Wednesday, 12.4% were confirmed positive. 

  • Percentage of S.C. residents age 12+ with at least one vaccine: 67.5%
  • Percentage of S.C. residents age 12+ who have completed vaccination: 58.1%
  • Percentage of S.C. residents age 5-11 with at least one vaccine: 18.7%
  • Percentage of S.C. residents age 5-11 who have completed vaccination: 14.6%

For more information, visit the S.C. SCDHEC COVID-19 dashboard.