MUSC COVID-19 Epidemiology Intelligence Project Midlands

COVID-19 Status Summary for the Midlands area (Kershaw, Fairfield, and Richland Counties)

View information for the Lancaster metropolitan area (Lancaster and Chester Counties)

View information for the Charleston metropolitan area (Charleston, Berkeley, and Dorchester Counties)

View information for the Florence area (Florence, Marion, Darlington, and Williamsburg Counties)

Updated 3/22/2023 | About This Project

View Methods and Metrics Description

 mid summary  indicators in mid 

The number of weekly COVID-19 infections officially reported is vastly under-counted due to home testing.

It is estimated that the number of actual COVID-19 cases is 6 to 10 times the number officially reported.

Based on these estimates, last week (March 12th-March 18th) in the Midlands area:

  • About 1 percent of the population were infected with COVID-19
  • 1,484 to 2,473 people were infected with COVID-19
  • 1 out of every 204 to 340 people were infected with COVID-19
zoomed mid 


What does the graph about tell us?

  • We recently had a surge of COVID-19 cases which began in the middle of May 2022. We are now in a stable period.
  • The week of July 26th, 2022 had the highest number of officially recorded COVID-19 infections with 69 people infected per day for every 100,000 people. After several weeks of similarly high values, we are now seeing a decline in COVID-19 infections.
  • As of last week, we had 7 cases per day per 100,000 people. Since most people now test for COVID-19 with home test kits only about 10 to 17 percent of infections are officially recorded.
    • Adjusting for under-counting due to home testing, it is likely that the actual number of infections per 100,000 people per day is between 42 and 70. Those numbers are equal to about 1 percent of the population infected every week.

      Final Version of long covid summary.

What does the graph above tell us?

  • This graphic compares the officially reported COVID-19 infections from testing in the Midlands area to the amount of COVID-19 virus detected in wastewater from a sewage treatment plant in the Midlands area.
  • Detection of COVID-19 from wastewater often picks up increases and decreases earlier than from COVID-19 testing data.
  • Recent analysis of wastewater from the Midlands shows declines in COVID-19 virus detected in the wastewater overall. Kershaw county’s treatment plant shows a surge in the amount of the virus detected in wastewater.
  • Note that the wastewater testing is from a sewage treatment plant that does not serve the entire Midlands are, and the testing data comes from the entire population of the Midlands area (Kershaw, Richland, and Fairfield counties).

This graph shows that the 7-day average of COVID-19 cases in the Midlands area is high.

What does the graph above tell us?

  • This graphic shows the trends in the daily number of COVID-19 infections since the beginning of the pandemic for our area.
  • There have been 5 distinct surges. We have had a surge in both the summer and the winter each year.
  • The most recent surge was one of the longest we have experienced to date.
  • Bear in mind that the recent surge was different from past surges in several important ways:
    • In the recent surge there was significant under-counting of cases due to home testing for COVID-19.
    • Mitigation strategies such as mask use and distancing were much lower than in past surges.
    • The current predominant COVID-19 variant (BA.5) is the most effective variant yet at infecting people who are vaccinated, and reinfecting people who got COVID-19 in the past.
    • We now have access to medications that can reduce the severity of illness from COVID-19.
    • The death rate from COVID-19 is now much lower, due largely to immunity from vaccinations and prior infections. Regardless, there are now approximately 283 people dying a day from COVID-19 in the United States, equivalent to 103,295 people a year.

COVID-19 Variants Based on Genetic Sequencing Conducted by the MUSC Molecular Pathology Laboratory. 

View Latest Covid-19 Variants of Interest:

MUSC COVID-19 Situation Assessment:  

View Methods and Metrics Description

Metric Status for the week of March 12th-March 18th
Weekly Change of Reported COVID-19 Infections
Trajectory of documented cases (Increasing or Decreasing)
 Number of Reported COVID-19 Cases in last week
YELLOW: 248 new cases reported  
Diagnostic Testing Availability
Return of Diagnostic Test Results
Hospital Capacity to treat Critical Patients
New Covid-19 Hospital Admissions per 100k population (7 day average) GREEN

COVID-19 Projections for South Carolina

Modeling from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) shows projections for South Carolina.