Aiken County reported its first coronavirus case on Friday, according to the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control.
No details on the gender or age of the patient from Aiken County has been released.
The patient's positive test result was confirmed by Aiken Regional Medical Centers on Friday afternoon. The patient is currently self-quarantined, according to a news release.
The hospital is awaiting additional test results from other patients who have been tested for coronavirus.
S.C. DHEC reported 45 new cases statewide Friday. That brings South Carolina's total number of cases to 126 in 25 counties as of March 20.
“The public needs to take our recommendations to prevent spread seriously so we can best protect our family, friends and neighbors,” said Dr. Linda Bell, State Epidemiologist, in a press release. “Unfortunately, these case numbers will continue to increase.
"The agency is working around the clock to prevent the spread of this disease, focusing on those who are most high-risk for experiencing severe illness from the disease. I’d like to remind all South Carolinians that we all have a responsibility to take the recommended steps for limiting spread.”
Dr. Gerald Gordon, an Infectious Diseases Specialist with Internal Medical Associates of Aiken and affiliate of the hospital, said social distancing and good hygiene are critical to slowing the spread of COVID-19.
“...If any individual is concerned about infection of COVID-19, please call in advance to allow healthcare workers to prepare to isolate you and protect themselves," Gordon said in a press release. "If providers become ill or are in a position to spread COVID-19 to our most vulnerable, they may not be available to care for patients.”
Shepeard Community Blood Center has been forced to cancel more than 20 blood drives in March and April.
Shepeard, which provides blood to local hospitals, is asking the community to donate blood at their centers to help maintain their supply.
Potential donors will be administered a health screening before being allowed to give blood, according to a press release.
Anyone experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, such as fever and respiratory problems, should call ahead to their healthcare provider or primary physician, according to DHEC. Telehealth screenings can also be scheduled online.
Physicians may also take exposure history and travel history into account before ordering a test.
Check back with Aiken Standard for updates.