COLUMBIA, S.C. (WSAV) – Health officials in South Carolina are stressing the importance of social distancing and self-isolation after predictions show more than 8,000 cases of COVID-19 in the state by May 2.
By next week, the South Carolina Department of Health Department and Environmental Control (DHEC) predicts more than 2,500 cases of the new virus in the state.
Still, Governor Henry McMaster has not called any shelter or stay orders for the state.
“South Carolinians have demonstrated that if you tell them what to do, they’ll do it,” he said at a press conference Thursday of the measures he’s already put into place in the state.
The department says even though predicted numbers are high, the state has the supplies currently to take care of patients with more than 5,000 open hospital beds and more than 1,000 ventilators.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only about 20% of coronavirus cases will need to be hospitalized, but DHEC is still stressing the importance of slowing the spread.
“We have to get better at slowing the spread of the disease which includes the recommendations that have already been given to us, practice social distancing, don’t be around other people,” said DHEC Epidemiologist Dr. Linda Bell.
Meanwhile, DHEC reported 9 deaths statewide due to coronavirus with more than 450 cases on Thursday.
Locally, 29 cases have been reported in Beaufort County as well as three in Jasper County.