SC doc overseeing pandemic response: Data shows masks work

3M N95-type and N100-type face masks (Photo: CDC / Debora Cartagena)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina’s top medical official for the coronavirus outbreak says new data shows mask ordinances are helping stem the spread of the illness.

The state epidemiologist, Dr. Linda Bell, says South Carolina will be in a better position in four to six weeks if residents practice physical distancing and use a mask. For months, Bell has advocated the wearing of face coverings to cut down on transmission of the virus.

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State health data showed Wednesday that the virus had infected more than 102,000 people in the state and caused more than 2,000 deaths.

Gov. Henry McMaster has stopped short of ordering a statewide mask mandate.