BEAUFORT COUNTY, S.C. (WSAV) — A disturbing trend is growing across South Carolina—deaths from COVID-19.

Although most schools and businesses have lifted mask mandates inside buildings, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) says that might be changing very soon.

In a Twitter thread, SCDHEC said that there have been 48 COVID-related deaths from Dec. 25 to 31. Because COVID-19 cases have increased across the state, it’s likely that the increased number of deaths is directly linked to the rising number of infections, the organization says.

Forty-four out of 46 counties in South Carolina are experiencing medium or high levels of transmission—a large increase compared to the 46 counties scoring low in transmission rates last fall.

Those living in “red” counties, or counties with high community levels of transmission should be wearing a mask indoors again. However, being in a “yellow” county, or one with a medium community level of transmission, can still carry some risk of infection. The SCDHEC recommends that those living in “yellow” counties should consider wearing a mask and taking other precautions.

However, stopping the spread can be relatively simple, the organization says. Wearing a mask can be inconvenient, but by taking appropriate precautions early, communities can slow the spread of COVID-19.