COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — One of South Carolina’s top state health officials says more COVID-19 outbreaks are inevitable in schools this fall.
State Epidemiologist Dr. Linda Bell said Wednesday that schools could keep coronavirus spread low by ensuring mask-wearing and social distancing, but the state’s current virus trajectory suggests more cases are inevitable.
Only a few schools have started their semesters, but health officials have already tracked 85 cases among students and staff during the first week of August.
Bell says the state is on track to match or surpass virus levels seen during the height of the pandemic last winter.
The epidemiologist’s warnings come the same day the state surpassed 10,000 COVID-19 deaths.