McMaster asks SC hospitals to reduce number of elective procedures to help speed up COVID-19 vaccinations

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South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster speaks with reporters after the first meeting of accelerateSC, his advisory group about reopening the state economy, on Thursday, April 23, 2020, in Columbia, S.C. (AP Photo/Meg Kinnard)

COLUMBIA, SC (WSPA) – Gov. Henry McMaster sent a letter to the South Carolina Hospital Association on Friday asking them to pass along his request to member hospitals for a “voluntary reduction in elective and non-essential procedures.”

In the letter Tweeted out by the governor, he said the state’s hospital systems are being faced with acute nursing and staffing shortages due to the rise in COVID-19 in-patients getting treatment, internal and external virus testing operations, as well as the growing demand for increased and expedited access to vaccinations.

“In the early stages of the pandemic, growing hospitalizations for COVID-19 and available bed space was successfully managed in our state due to the forward-thinking leadership of your member hospitals,” McMaster said. “Voluntarily scaling back elective and non-essential procedures now, in order to increase the number of vaccinations being delivered on an hourly and daily basis, will help improve the public’s confidence and participation in our state’s COVID-19 response.”

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