HCS requests at home COVID-19 testing kits from DHEC, updates quarantine guidelines
HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) – Horry County Schools announced new COVID-19 testing and quarantine protocols Tuesday morning.
According to a press release, HCS has requested that the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control provide the school district with at-home COVID-19 tests in order to take part in DHEC’s Test-to-Stay program.
HCS has not been notified when they will receive the at-home test kits from DHEC to distribute to parents, but officials say the school district will proceed with the new DHEC quarantine guidelines beginning Wednesday.
“These changes will allow for no quarantine based upon receipt of negative test results. Parents may report results from tests which they have administered to their student or secured from a third party. Rapid tests are available at no cost at many public health departments and through the Federal Government. Tests are also available for purchase at many pharmacies and retail stores,” the release stated.
According to HCS, the school district will inform parents when the COVID-19 tests are received from DHEC and are available for pick-up at each school site, as HCS will not perform COVID-19 testing within the school buildings.
Officials say parents who elect to use these kits to test their student at home will be required to submit their student’s test results utilizing the DHEC attestation form.
Starting on Wednesday, parents will be notified if their student is deemed a close contact of a COVID-19 positive individual.
Officials say a student, regardless of his/her vaccination status, who is identified as a close contact of a COVID-19 positive individual may continue to attend school and avoid quarantine provided he/she has no symptoms and if he/she does all of the following:
- Remains symptom-free.
- Wears a mask through Day 10.
- If a student refuses to wear a mask, the individual cannot participate in the Test-to-Stay program and will be required to quarantine for 10 days
- Gets a COVID-19 test between Days 5 - 7 and provide the test results prior to Day 8.
- A PCR, rapid antigen from a lab, or an at-home rapid test are accepted. If an at-home rapid test is conducted, a DHEC attestation form must be completed and submitted to the school. Either the DHEC Attestation Form or a negative test result can be delivered to the school nurse OR may be sent to negativeCOVID19testresults@horrycountyschools.net.
- If the test result is positive, your student should isolate immediately, must submit the test result to the school, and await further guidance from the school.
- If a test result is NOT submitted by Day 8, the student must quarantine at home for three additional days (Days 8 - 10) before he/she can return to school on Day 11.
If the student develops symptoms at any time, he/she must isolate immediately, report symptoms to the school, and await further guidance from the school, according to HCS.
Symptoms of illness during quarantine period include:
● Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.
● New or worsening cough.
● New loss of taste or smell.
● Fever of at least 100.4.
● OR any two or more of the following symptoms during the 10 days of an exposure: new onset of severe headache, fatigue, persistent or worsening sore throat, congestion or runny nose, muscle pain or body aches, nausea/vomiting, or diarrhea.
If parents have any questions, they may email them to COVID19info@horrycountyschools.net.
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