White House report on COVID-19.: ‘South Carolina in full pandemic resurgence’
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WMBF) – A White House report on the coronavirus in South Carolina shows that the spread and number of cases have not slowed down.
The report marks South Carolina in the red zone for cases, which indicates that there are 101 or more new cases per 100,000 people, making it the 12th highest rate in the country.
“South Carolina has seen an increase in new cases and test positivity, as well as rapidly rising hospitalizations, which is consistent with full pandemic resurgence,” according to the White House report.
Out of the state’s 46 counties, Horry County has the third-highest number of new cases in the past three weeks. The Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach zone is also listed as one of the 17 metro areas in the red zone.
The fall and winter surge has shown to be nearly twice the rate of cases from the spring and summer, according to the White House report. It goes on to state that data suggests the possibility that some strains of the virus have evolved into a more transmissible virus.
“Given that possibility, and the presence of the UK variant that is already spreading in our communities and may be 50% more transmissible, we must be ready for and mitigate much more rapid transmission,” the report suggests.
The White House recommends aggressive mitigation which includes wearing masks, social distancing and avoid large gatherings. The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control just announced on Thursday that it is moving from disease containment to disease mitigation.
According to DHEC, during containment, the effort is made to control the spread of disease by investigating each case and all who come into contact with them. The move from disease containment to a disease mitigation phase occurs when cases of the disease are widespread and difficult to investigate one by one.
The White House report also recommended rapid immunization as a way to decrease cases.
“No vaccines should be in freezers but should instead be put in arms now; active and aggressive immunization in the face of this surge would save lives,” the report stated.
DHEC interim Public Health Director Dr. Brannon Traxler revealed on Friday that 100% of the vaccines sent to South Carolina by the federal government have been administered or scheduled to be administered. She said that the demand for the vaccine is exceeding the number of doses that is supplied every week.
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