COLUMBIA, S.C. — Health officials say as of Thursday 50 percent of eligible South Carolina residents have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
The latest data shows 816,007 South Carolinians have received one dose of the Moderna vaccine, 1,189,885 residents have received one dose of the Pfizer vaccine, and 141,039 residents have received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
Health officials say this means 44 percent of South Carolinians are now fully vaccinated.
“This milestone is encouraging, and we thank everyone who made the decision to get vaccinated. We are especially proud of our senior citizens, ages 65 and up, who account for more than a third of our state’s vaccinations. But we still have a lot of work to do,” said Dr. Edward Simmer, DHEC Director. “We encourage our younger residents to roll up their sleeve and get this life-saving vaccine so they can protect themselves, as well as family members who may have preexisting conditions and children who are too young to get vaccinated.”
Younger residents in the state, between the ages of 20-24 and 12-19 respectively, are among the least vaccinated age groups and are seeing significant increases in cases and hospitalizations, according to a news release.
Health officials say becoming fully vaccinated is the most effective way to prevent serious illness and even death from contracting COVID-19.
Officials say vaccinations are more important than ever due to the increased cases of the Delta variant and other variants; that make COVID more easily transmissible and cause increase risk of sever sickness, hospitalization, and death.
Health officials say these variants are especially concerning as children prepare for the upcoming school year, and at least 150 COVID-19 cases have been reported among residents who attended or worked at a summer camp with kids.
“These numbers are a snapshot of what could happen in our schools this year if more parents, students, teachers, and other school officials don’t get vaccinated,” Simmer added. “At this time last year, we did not have a solution to defeat COVID-19. Now we do. We don’t want this deadly virus spreading in our school or communities. Vaccinations will help us end this pandemic, and we need all eligible residents to be on board.”
Click here to make an appointment to be vaccinated in South Carolina.