DHEC Announces Influencer Campaign to Increase Awareness of Actions South Carolinians Can Take To Help Fight the Spread of COVID-19
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
May 1, 2020
COLUMBIA, S.C. – The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) is launching a public service announcement campaign that enlists the assistance of local and state influencers to encourage residents to do their part to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
In addition to urging residents to follow public health guidance to protect themselves and others, the PSAs also seek to bring increased awareness among groups such as older residents and African Americans, who are at higher risk of severe illness due the disease.
Current PSA videos feature Representative James Clyburn, Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin, and Dr. Linda Bell, DHEC State Epidemiologist. The agency also plans to spotlight other well-known South Carolinians in fields such as entertainment, athletics and more.
“I want to thank the many South Carolinians who have been making great sacrifices to protect themselves and our communities from COVID-19.” said State Epidemiologist Linda Bell, M.D. “But the virus is still spreading. We can’t let up now. By making these PSA videos available, it’s another tool that we can use in our effort to combat this pandemic and help save lives.”
Congressman Clyburn said intense outreach and education is needed to help reach those who are at most risk of severe illness from the virus. "COVID-19 has impacted certain groups harder, including those of us who are older and may suffer from conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and lung disease, and it has had a devastating impact on African Americans," he said.
How South Carolinians Can Protect Themselves
Evidence is increasing about the high rates of infection in people who do not have symptoms and don’t know they are infectious. This places everyone at risk of getting the virus or unknowingly transmitting it to someone else. South Carolinians are encouraged to stay home and minimize contact with people outside their households to prevent the spread of the disease. Other steps the public should take include:
- Practicing social distancing
- Wearing a mask while out in public
- Avoiding touching frequently touched items
- Regularly washing your hands
- Monitoring for symptoms
Anyone with concerns about their health should reach out to their healthcare provider or use the telehealth services provided by several health care systems. For telehealth options and the latest information about DHEC’s COVID-19 response efforts, please visit scdhec.gov/COVID19. Visit scdmh.net for stress, anxiety and mental health resources from the S.C. Department of Mental Health.