Data from the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) shows that case number COVID-19 in Upstate counties continues to rise at a steady pace, near or beyond previous state peaks. As cases in Pickens, Greenville and surrounding counties increase and other disease surveillance indicators trend upward, health officials warn that the state could enter a fall.
This uptick is not unique to South Carolina as cases climb nationally and in other states. At the end of October, almost 100,000 cases were reported in one day in the United States, where new daily cases were registered. Several key indicators in South Carolina have developed upwards since August, including:
• Daily number of cases per 100,000
• Percent positive
• Hospitalizations due to COVID-19
• Number of COVID-19 patients in ventilators
“No one should lose the power we all have to help reduce COVID-19 deaths and illnesses for all of us. We really have an opportunity to take much better control over the spread of this virus, says Dr. Linda Bell, state epidemiologist. “Having a mask in public and practicing physical distancing would consistently change the course of our cases in South Carolina in a positive way, and I hope this happens very soon.”
The re-emergence of cases and hospital stays can have a profound impact on health care systems, the economy and school and university activities. Public health experts are urging residents to take action now by redirecting themselves to the daily precautions that will help prevent the spread of this deadly virus.
“The increase in bills, hospital stays and deaths across the country is extremely worrying, and we need to redouble our efforts to prevent a second wave in South Carolina,” said Dr. . We understand that “COVID-19 fatigue” occurs and we all want to return to normalcy. But think of our first responders, doctors and nurses, law enforcement officials, and important workers who, even though they are exhausted, continue to work to keep us safe. We can not give up. ”
South Carolinans should commit to the daily actions recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to protect themselves and others from COVID-19, which include:
Consistent and correct use of masks;
Hand hygiene and breathing etiquette; and
Frequent cleaning and disinfection.
In addition, it is recommended that all six months and older get their flu shot, with experts saying this year’s flu shot may be “the most important flu shot in your life.” Getting the flu and COVID-19 at the same time can probably cause more complications than if the flu were the only infection. It is also important to get a flu to prevent overwhelming hospitals, ICUs and ventilators with both flu and COVID-19 patients.
While the development of a COVID-19 vaccine continues, it is expected that when a safe, approved vaccine is available, it will be limited in quantity and initially administered to only certain high-risk groups. This means that residents will need to continue to follow the same disease prevention measures that are currently recommended even when a vaccine becomes available. Visit scdhec.gov/covid19 for the latest information on COVID-19 in South Carolina.