A specimen collection bag for a COVID-19 test | MUSC photo

Gov. Henry McMaster announced Monday the state will begin distributing the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to any S.C. residents aged 70 and up on Wednesday, Jan. 13. With 82,266 of the 146,500 available doses administered, McMaster and health officials opted to speed up the process by allowing those in the highest-risk age demographic to be vaccinated as soon as possible.

An appointment with a vaccination location must be ahead of time. The Department of Health and Environmental Control also added 50 new vaccine locations on Monday. Appointments can be made online by visiting scdhec.gov/vaccinelocations or calling (855) 472-3432.

New COVID-19 case numbers reported on Monday are lower than the actual case count due to an internal system issue on DHEC’s website. As of Monday afternoon, 2,644 new cases were reported statewide with an additional 14 deaths, bringing the percent positive to 25.9%.

Numbers are expected to update when system issue is resolved.

If you’re looking to get tested, Edmund’s Oast is offering free tests every Wednesday in the parking lot. This week, free tests will also be available at the Charleston International Airport on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 2:30-5:30 p.m. For additional locations, check scdhec.gov/findatest.