Good morning, Columbia, Lauren here. This morning, I’m getting open + honest about coronavirus testing. 🦠
After cases began to steadily rise and some acquaintances tested positive, I decided to get tested yesterday morning. While I have no symptoms and don’t think I’ve come into direct contact with the virus, I wanted to be safe + proactive. Until I get the results back, which will take about three to five days, I’ll be hanging out at home.
With a little research (and the help of DHEC’s testing finder) I was able to find a free testing location and book an appointment for the next day at a drive-thru testing center at the Walmart on Garners Ferry Rd. The testing was hosted by Quest Diagnostics + I had to take a short survey to qualify for it. My appointment was at 8:25 a.m. and I left by 8:55 a.m.
When I drove up, a testing center worker held up a sign letting me know to keep my windows up and hold my appointment confirmation and ID against the window. After getting checked in, another worker passed my testing kit through the window with a long tool, similar to a trash picker. The kit included a nasal swab, vial, tissues and a form with my information. I held onto the kit until it was my turn in line.
The testing kit I was given.
The next worker was a pharmacist who had me roll the windows completely down (partially due to tint) so she could instruct me + observe me complete the test. I put the swab up my nose, to a predetermined mark, one nostril at a time, turned it twice and held it for 15 seconds. The pharmacist warned me the swab may make my eyes water, make me sneeze, need to cough or gag. While it wasn’t painful, just uncomfortable, my eyes did water when I took the swab out.
When I was done, the pharmacist had me put the swab inside the vial and place my kit into a cooler, which she rolled up to my window. The entire process was contactless and the workers wore masks, face shields, gloves + coveralls.
The process was contactless and workers wore masks, shields, gloves + coveralls.
Overall, the test wasn’t necessarily a pleasant experience, but it couldn’t have been easier and I feel better knowing that in a few days I’ll have my results and can help prevent the spread if it does come back positive.
○ On Wednesday, DHECannounced 1,291 new cases of coronavirus and 10 additional deaths in SC. That brings the total number of cases in SC of COVID-19 to 27,842, and the total deaths to 683.
○ Additionally, DHEC reports that there are currently 832 hospital beds occupied by patients who have either tested positive or are under investigation for COVID-19, which is a 73.6% statewide hospital bed utilization rate.
○ In response to the rising COVID-19 cases in SC, the state has increased the testing goal to between 110,000 and 165,000 residents per month through the end of 2020. Click here for more testing locations.
○ Columbia Metropolitan Airport is now offering free masks to any travelers courtesy of The U.S. Department of Transportation. The masks are available at the information desk in the main lobby and in the line at the TSA Security checkpoint. American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and United Airlines serve CAE + each airline is requiring their passengers to wear a mask or face covering onboard their flights.
○ New York, New Jersey + Connecticut have announced that any travelers,from South Carolina or other states with increased daily COVID-19, cases will be asked to quarantine for up to two weeks upon their arrival. (The State)
Click the button below for local resources regarding the coronavirus.
Hey, there. Looking for today’s #MustDo events? In accordance with the
CDC’s recommendations regarding public gatherings, we have decided to postpone public event coverage for the time being. We look forward to bringing you Columbia’s #MustDo events soon (until then, feel free to submit your virtual events
Steel Hands Brewing celebrated a mighty milestone yesterday as they filled their one millionth can of beer. And, lucky for us, the brewery is hosting a giveaway to spread the cheer.
Ten of the golden cans featured in the new variety packs will be stamped with a special message on the bottom. If you find one of the cans, you’ll win a $100 gift card + some Steel Hands swag.
Happy hunting, y’all.
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Weather ○ 83º | Scattered thunderstorms | 60%chance of rain
Columbia ○ We know y’all know that Columbia is pretty rad + now it’s time to show it. Cola has been nominated for the “Coolest Up-and-Coming City” in Hemisphere Magazine’s Readers’ Choice Awards. You know what to do – head on over to this website to cast your vote.
Politics ○ ICYMI – Tuesday held the SC Primary runoff election. Gretchen Barron + Cheryl D. Englishwon over incumbent Richland County Council members. Check out the full list of election results here. (ABC Columbia)
Dish ○ DYK? You can still get your favorite ballpark food (plus wraps, salads and apps) Fridays + Saturdays at the Fireflies Bar & Grill. Beer, wine + spirits are available, and the jumbotron will screen sports and entertainment. Make your reservation. 🌭Ⓟ
Cause ○ Transitions Homeless Center is hosting this year’s Chefs’ Feast virtually on June 30 from 4-5 p.m. Tickets to the virtual event are $150 and fund 25 days of meals for a homeless individual in our community. Tickets will also enter participants into a drawing for a chance to win one of many local culinary experiences. Purchase your ticket here.
Civic ○ Lexington County Council passed its 2021 fiscal year budget, which includes an approx. $5.7 million increase in first responder funding, on Tuesday. The increase in funding will be split between EMS services, fire services and law enforcement. (WIS)
FeaturedJob ○AmeriCorps Midlands Reading Consortium (MRC), a direct service program of United Way of the Midlands, is seeking School Liaisons. Responsibilities include enrolling pre-kindergarten to second grade students in one-to-one reading engagement sessions, engaging parents about the importance of reading at home, increasing home libraries through book distribution, and promoting literacy through general outreach and community engagement in Richland + Lexington Counties. Learn more about the opportunity and how to apply here. Ⓟ
Save the planet in style. Nothing New sneakers are comfy, eco-friendly footwear made from recycled water bottles. The uppers are crafted from a canvas material that is both sustainable + durable, while true stitch construction creates a flexible bond without the need for harmful chemicals or sulfur emissions.
Esquire even said they “might be the most sustainable (and stylish) sneakers on the planet.”
Bonus: Free shipping + returns(in eco-friendly packaging, of course). Ⓟ