Older Adults & Medical Conditions (COVID-19)

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DHEC continues to work with federal, state and local partners as it investigates COVID-19 cases in South Carolina. DHEC’s top priority remains protecting the public during this national and state emergency.

elderly woman sitting in a chair on an old fashioned chorded telephone


COVID-19 can cause mild to severe illness. In most cases the illness will be mild. However, some individuals are at greater risk of severe illness. As we learn more about COVID-19 as this outbreak progresses, one of the key things we have learned about this virus is that older adults and people who have serious underlying medical conditions, such as heart disease and diabetes, are at a higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19.

Adults aged 65 and older should take extra precautions. If you are older or have a serious underlying medical condition, please:

  • Wash your hands often.
  • Avoid close contact (at least 6 feet) with people who are sick.
  • Put distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.
  • Avoid all cruise travel and non-essential air travel.
  • Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying condition or if you are sick. For a free online health assessment, please see our listing of telehealth virtual care providers in South Carolina.

Additional Resources


Community Survey COVID-19 Statewide