Vaccine eligibility expansion begins Wednesday in South Carolina

Vaccine eligibility expansion begins Wednesday in South Carolina

BEAUFORT COUNTY, S.C. (WTOC) - South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster announced last week that vaccine eligibility is expanding for anyone who is 16 years and older on March 31.

You can begin making an appointment Wednesday

Leaders at Hilton Head Regional say they are ready for that expansion.

“We are seeing more appointments. We are seeing a lot more interest, and so we are going to be adding appointments next week and into the following week so that we can accommodate all of the increased demand,” HHI Regional CEO Jeremy Clark said.

Hilton Head Regional Hospital and Coastal Carolina Hospital are two of the largest vaccine providers in the Lowcountry. They say ahead of this week’s expansion, they have seen an increase in demand for COVID-19 vaccination appointments.

Most of the appointments booked at their largest vaccination site for this week are for second doses. That means starting next week, far more appointments will be available for anyone 16 and older who wants to get a vaccine.

They say this is a cycle that will likely continue over the next few months as they try to get as many people vaccinated as possible. “We see a continued increase in demand. And so, part of the reason we went to the Buckwalter Rec Center is because it’s a centralized location but also because it’s a larger facility. And so last week we were doing about 1,000 vaccinations a day, tomorrow we will do 1,600. So, we are looking to continually grow and continue finding more ways to do it, and that way we can accommodate more seniors, more adults, and more high schoolers.”

They add if you decide you want the vaccine and try to sign up but can’t find an appointment, be patient, and check the next week.

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