South Carolina – Shortly after CDC announced the new guidelines on Tuesday, DHEC recommended wearing face masks indoors for all residents in the state, including the fully vaccinated residents.
The DHEC announcement came shortly after CDC issued new guidelines for wearing masks in ‘coronavirus hotspots’ across the country.
“Today’s change in guidance from the CDC reflects the very concerning trends we are seeing nationally and here in South Carolina regarding increasing case rates and a stagnant vaccination rate,” said Dr. Brannon Traxler, DHEC Public Health Director, in a written statement.
“As a virus spreads, it mutates into more contagious forms, which explains the rise of the Delta variant.”
As state officials already informed, students are getting back in class this fall for in-person teaching. DHEC decided to follow the CDC guidelines as schools prepare to reopen in the fall making everyone including teachers, students, children and visitors to K-12 school wear face coverings while indoors.
CDC revised their previous decision to lift the mask mandate two months ago. The reason for their decision is the increasing number of cases across the country, and what’s even more alarming, the increasing number of new Covid-19 cases in fully vaccinated people.
Data from DHEC shows 90% of individuals contracting COVID-19 are unvaccinated. In addition, 86% of those hospitalized with the disease were unvaccinated.
DHEC added that they are not forcing people to wear masks as this not a mask mandate, but it’s highly recommended.
Health officials urge people who haven’t received the shot to get vaccinated as soon as possible since vaccines are still very efficient against the highly transmittable Delta variant.