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Staff reports | About one third of Americans age 65 and up who have completed their initial vaccination cycle have still not gotten their first booster shot, according to a report from NBC News, a number that has national health experts worried. 

Meanwhile, The state Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) transitioned to weekly reporting of new COVID data in March. The most recent numbers were reported Wednesday and covered May 1-7. State health officials on Wednesday reported 4,458 total new cases  of COVID-19 — a 30 percent increase over last week — and four total new deaths. 

Americans 65 and up are at the highest risk for serious illness and death due to COVID-19 infection, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, representing about 75% of COVID deaths in the U.S., according to a KFF analysis

The failure to boost more of this group has resulted in the loss of tens of thousands of lives, Dr. Eric Topol, founder and director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute, said in an NBC report. “The booster program has been botched from day one,” he said. “This is one of the most important issues for the American pandemic, and it has been mismanaged.”

National health experts say a shift in the responsibility for ongoing immunization from government-sponsored clinics to individual providers may have a positive impact. But primary health care systems are not set up to readily take on such a public health mention, former CDC director Dr. Thomas Frieden told NBC.

Aside from breaking or other vital news reports, Charleston City Paper is moving from daily COVID-19 reporting to a weekly basis, with reports coinciding with the publishing of data from the state Department of Health and Environmental Control on Tuesdays. 

Latest COVID-19 data

The state Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) transitioned to weekly reporting of new COVID data in March. The most recent numbers were reported Wednesday and covered May 1-7.

State health officials on Wednesday reported 4,458 total new cases of COVID-19 — more than a 30% increase over last week — and four total new deaths. As of May 11, 120 COVID-19-positive individuals were hospitalized, and four were on ventilators. 

No positivity rate was reported by DHEC.

  • Percentage of S.C. residents age 12+ with at least one vaccine: 67.1%
  • Percentage of S.C. residents age 12+ who have completed vaccination: 58%
  • Percentage of S.C. residents age 5-11 with at least one vaccine: 20.2%
  • Percentage of S.C. residents age 5-11 who have completed vaccination: 16.4%

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