South Carolina - COVID-19 Covered

South Carolina

Total Cases: 170,678 (October 25)
Fatalities: 3,802 (October 25)
  • You can find your closest South Carolina COVID-19 testing site here. found here. 


Essential Service Designations:

  • In his April 6 executive order, Governor McMaster outlines non-essential services and businesses as follows: entertainment venues and facilities, recreational and athletic facilities, close-contact service providers, and select retail stores. A full list can be found here 

Labor & Workforce Guidance, Standards and Regulations:

  • Governor McMaster and S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) Executive Director Dan Ellzey announced that the state of South Carolina submitted its grant application for FEMA’s Lost Wages Assistance (LWA) program on Wednesday, August 26. (August 26)  
  • South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control released general reopening guidelines for businesses. (May 5) 
  • Hair salon, nail salon, and barbershop employees must wear face masks and provide them for customers who do not have their own(May 15 
  • Gym and fitness center employees will have to wear masks, but people working out will not be required to do so. (May 15) 

Economic Stimulus & Relief:

  • Governor McMaster released recommendations to the General Assembly for how the Phase II expenditure of CARES Act funds should be invested. (September 10) 
  • Members of Accelerate SC plan to use $500 million to replenish the unemployment trust fund, $250 million for hospitals, and $100 million to expand broadband internet to rural areas. (May 20) 

Business Support & Resources:

  • Governor McMaster announced that two new South Carolina CARES Act grant programsthe Minority and Small Business Relief Grant Program and the Nonprofit Relief Grant Programwill begin accepting applications on Monday, October 19. The programs will provide financial reimbursement to small businesses and nonprofits for COVID-19 related financial or operational impacts. (October 16)  
  • More than 28,000 South Carolina small businesses have been approved for the second round of Paycheck Protection Program payouts. (May 4) 



  • Governor McMaster has lifted restaurant occupancy limits statewide. (October 2) 
  • Governor McMaster is now requiring restaurants and other establishments that attract groups of people to operate dine-in services at no more than 50 percent occupancy. Employees and patrons must wear masks or face coverings and tables must also be spaced to keep diners at least six feet apart. No more than eight customers will be allowed to sit at each table unless the customers are from the same family. Standing or congregating in the bar area of restaurant is also prohibited. (July 29) 
  • Governor McMaster announced that the sale of alcoholic beverages in all bars and restaurants throughout the state will be prohibited after 11:00PM each night. (July 10 
  • Governor McMaster declared a new state of emergency as state health officials continue to see a spike in COVID-19 cases. (June 26 
  • Competitive youth and adult sports leagues will be allowed to begin practice on May 30. Games can begin on June 15. (May 21) 
  • Governor McMaster declared that restrictions on arcades; tourist attractions such as museums, aquariums, planetariums, mini-golf and go-kart racing; indoor children’s play areas; bingo halls; and venues operated by social clubs will be partially lifted on May 22. (May 21) 
  • “Close contact” businesses are allowed to reopen to customers with restrictions in place. Close-contact businesses include barbershops, hair salons, waxing salons, threading salons, nail salons and spas, body-art facilities and tattoo services, tanning salons, massage-therapy establishments, massage services, gyms, fitness centers and group exercise facilities such as yoga studios and barre classes. Public and commercial pools can also reopen. (May 18) 
  • The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) announced that Beaufort County’s Shellfish Management Area can reopen. (May 8) 
  • Governor McMaster signed an executive order that authorized the reopening of public beaches. (April 21) 



  • Henry McMaster announced the state will purchase and distribute $10 million worth of personal protective equipment (PPE) and supplies to seventy school districts to help ensure that schools reopen safely this fall. (August 12)
  • South Carolina released its final 92-page report on the possibility of reopening schools for the 2020-21 academic year. Details can be found here.

State Higher Education:

  • A list of South Carolina universities and colleges planning to reopen in the fall can be found here. 

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