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Some people wore a mask and steered clear of the crowds on Memorial Day weekend in Myrtle Beach. Photo by Janet Morgan/janet.morgan@myhorrynews.com

The state Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) on Thursday announced 1,538 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in South Carolina, including 80 in Horry County.

DHEC officials also announced 49 additional deaths linked to COVID-19. Four of those patients were elderly people from Horry County.

It brings the county’s cumulative COVID-19 case total up to 7,174 with 97 deaths connected to the disease. The statewide case total is now at 76,315 and 1,294 deaths.

As of Wednesday, a total of 669,445 tests for the disease have been conducted in the state. The total number of individual test results reported to DHEC Wednesday statewide was 7,360 — not including antibody tests — and the percent positive of those tests was 20.9%.

Currently, there are 67 mobile testing events scheduled through Aug. 15 with new testing events added regularly. Find a mobile testing clinic event near you at scdhec.gov/covid19mobileclinics.

The free COVID-19 drive-through testing event set for Friday, July 24, will continue as planned at Coastal Carolina University. The testing event originally set for Friday, July 31, at Myrtle Beach Pelicans Stadium, however, is moving to Saturday, Aug. 1.

Both testing events will be held from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. The drive-through events, a collaboration between Tidelands Health and DHEC, are designed to administer free COVID-19 tests to thousands.

The events are open to the public, and pre-screening is not required. Participants drive up to be tested and remain in their vehicles throughout the process.

Residents can also get tested at one of 182 permanent COVID-19 testing facilities across the state. Visit scdhec.gov/covid19testing for more information.

DHEC urges South Carolinians to practice social distancing, wear a mask in public, avoid group gatherings, wash hands regularly and stay home if they are sick to help prevent COVID-19's spread. Go to scdmh.net for stress, anxiety and mental health resources from the state Department of Mental Health.

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