January 11, 2021
South Carolinians Aged 70 and Older Can Schedule COVID-19 Vaccine Appointments Beginning Jan. 13
In a press release published today, Governor Henry McMaster and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) announced that beginning Wednesday, Jan. 13, any South Carolina resident aged 70 or older, regardless of health status or preexisting conditions, can begin scheduling their appointment to receive COVID-19 vaccine. Read the entire press release here.
Based on COVID-19 vaccine data — doses received, administered, and appointments scheduled — South Carolina officials are confident the majority of people in Phase 1a who want to be vaccinated have either received their shots or have scheduled appointments to do so. There are currently 146,500 doses of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine in the state, with 82,266 total doses already administered (a 56 percent utilization rate) plus 94,926 appointments scheduled by Phase 1a individuals to receive their vaccine over the next several weeks. Additional steps to expedite access to additional South Carolinians will be made based on the use of the vaccine, the number of appointments made, and information on vaccine supply.
What to Know
- Beginning Wednesday, Jan. 13, any South Carolina resident who’s at least 70 years old can schedule their appointment for receiving the vaccine
- The vaccine can only be administered by appointment – you can’t walk into a health care facility and ask for a vaccine
- Residents will be asked to provide a driver’s license or other forms of ID at their appointment that confirms their age and, therefore, their eligibility to receive the vaccine
- Individuals eligible to receive the vaccine can schedule an appointment using this online resource by clicking here, which currently includes several major hospitals, seven DHEC sites, a DHEC mobile clinic, and 12 Doctor’s Cares locations. An additional 50 locations will be added to this list and available to provide vaccine by the beginning of next week. Individuals can also call the DHEC Care Line at 1-855-472-3432 for assistance with scheduling an appointment.
- As long-term care facility residents and staff continue to receive their Moderna vaccine through the federal Long-Term Care program, the state can soon redirect some Moderna vaccine from that program and make it available to others
- South Carolina is committed to making the limited supply of COVID-19 available to rural and unserved communities that have residents currently eligible to receive the vaccine. This is occurring through:
- an increased number of DHEC mobile clinic locations, where DHEC can bring the vaccine to communities without nearby locations offering a vaccine
- working with the South Carolina Vaccine Advisory Committee, Office of Rural Health, Office of Minority Affairs, South Carolina Hospital Association, South Carolina Medical Association, and other state and local partners to establish vaccine provider locations to rural and underserved communities
- continuing to educate and inform rural, minority, and non-White communities about the safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccine
- The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine requires two shots separated by 21 days. The Moderna vaccine requires two shots separated by 28 days. You need to receive both shots of the same product; vaccine brands are not interchangeable.
- Both shots are needed for complete protection against COVID-19. After receiving both shots, the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines are 94-95 percent effective in preventing disease.
- Individuals will receive a vaccine card after receiving their first shot, reminding them when their second shot is due. Most providers are also issuing second-dose appointment reminders to patients by way of phone calls, emails or text messages.
- Getting vaccinated is one of the many steps you can take to protect yourself and others from COVID-19. Protection from COVID-19 is critically important because, for some people, it can cause severe illness or death.
- Stopping a pandemic requires using all the tools available. Vaccines work with your immune system so your body will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed. Other steps, like masks and physical distancing, help reduce your chance of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others.
As the worldwide pandemic and vaccine distribution continue to be quickly evolving situations, South Carolinians are reminded to stay updated by following trusted, verified sources for the latest information. DHEC continues to hold at least twice-weekly updates to our state’s media outlets as part of ongoing efforts to provide the most current information available. For the latest COVID-19 vaccine information, visit scdhec.gov/vaxfacts.
SCDHEC has announced an upward trend in cases of COVID-19 in Charleston County. Find a testing location here. The Town is operating under Emergency Ordinance 2020-09.2, which requires face coverings and other emergency restrictions to address COVID-19 until February 3, 2021.
Visit the Town’s comprehensive webpage with resources on COVID-19 including updated statistics, DHEC reporting, and more.