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‘Potentially troubling news’ in COVID numbers, SC health dept. says

The public health director for the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental...
The public health director for the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control said Wednesday a steady decline in COVID cases had come to an end.((Source: WIS))
Published: Nov. 25, 2021 at 3:30 AM EST|Updated: Nov. 25, 2021 at 4:13 AM EST
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCSC) - The public health director for the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control said Wednesday a steady decline in COVID cases had come to an end.

Dr. Brannon Traxler said after a week in early September with 39,696 cases, the second-highest weekly total of cases of the pandemic, the state saw 10 weeks of declining cases.

But that is no longer the case.

For the week ending Nov. 13, the state had dropped to just 4,446 new cases.

But for the week ending Saturday, that total grew to 5,170, she said.

“I don’t want to hit the panic button, but we are strongly encouraging all South Carolinians to continue the safety protocols that helped drive us that helped us drive these numbers down from that high point back in early September,” Traxler said during Wednesday’s weekly DHEC briefing. “It helped us get those 10 consecutive weeks of the decrease.”

She said staying vigilant is especially important as millions of South Carolinians and hundreds of millions across the country gather with friends and family to celebrate Thanksgiving and then additional holidays over the next several weeks.

“We fought so hard together as a state to bring our cases down and we’ve been successful,” Traxler said. “The absolute worst thing that could happen is suffering another significant surge that will bring more hospitalizations and deaths after we did such good work bringing cases down for those 10 weeks.”

She insisted it would take everyone “banding together make it through this holiday season” with minimal new cases or deaths.

“Please continue wearing your masks, staying a safe distance away from others when possible, and also when possible gathering outdoors when you’re in groups, particularly large groups,” she said.

She also urged everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated.

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