COLUMBIA, S.C. (WMBF) – The number of medical professionals who can administer the COVID-19 vaccine in South Carolina has grown.
According to a press release, the Department of Health and Environmental Control and the S.C. Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation issued a joint order expanding the number of medical professionals who can give the vaccine. This group includes:
- Personnel with current certifications by certain certifying boards
- Students of an accredited medical school with appropriate instruction and documented training
- Registered nurses and licensed practical nurses who have retired, become inactive, or whose licenses have lapsed within the last five years but were in good standing
DHEC officials said these newly qualified persons will need to enroll in the federal program all providers must successfully complete in order to administer COVID-19 vaccine.
There are currently 924 vaccine provider sites enrolled in the federal program for administering COVID-19 vaccine and 286 of those provider sites are currently activated and able to administer the vaccine, state health officials said. The number of activated sites will increase as vaccine becomes more widely available.
DHEC states that while the amount of COVID-19 vaccine is currently limited in S.C., as it is in all states, the purpose of the order is to ensure the state has enough trained medical professionals for administering shots when vaccine supply into South Carolina becomes more widely available.
“While South Carolina is currently in Phase 1a of its vaccine plan which is targeted at protecting front-line medical workers, long-term care facility residents and staff, and those who are 70 older, this joint order proactively puts us in a position to have an increased number of people who can administer vaccine when the vaccine is more widely available to everyone,” said Marshall Taylor, DHEC’s acting director.