Young people who have been screened at a series of free clinics held along the Grand Strand are testing positive for COVID-19 at a higher rate than older individuals, reinforcing the need for people of all ages to take precautions to limit the spread of the virus.
Tidelands Health, the region’s leader in COVID-19 testing and response, has conducted nearly 5,000 free COVID-19 tests across the region over the past several weeks through an ongoing partnership with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.
Of more than 500 people ages 16-25 who have been tested at the clinics, 16 percent were positive, followed by 11 percent of adults age adults ages 26-40 and 10 percent of children 15 and under.
By contrast, 6 percent of adults ages 41-64 tested positive, and only 2 percent of people ages 65 and older were infected with COVID-19.
“It’s concerning that such a high percentage of younger people are testing positive for the virus,” says Dr. Gerald Harmon, vice president of medical affairs for Tidelands Health. “Although young people are at a lower risk for serious complications from COVID-19, they certainly aren’t immune and can easily spread the disease to people at higher risk, which can include co-workers and family members.”