COVID-19 Vaccine: What You Need to Know And Who is Eligible

April 01, 2021

The COVID-19 Vaccine is one way we can build defenses against COVID-19 in our communities. McLeod Health is vaccinating based on national and state guidelines. This advisory is to remind the public of who is currently eligible for the COVID-19 Vaccine in Phase 1B and what the criteria includes for this phase -- persons aged 55+ and older along with younger age groups who meet the criteria, see detailed list in news attachment.

Who Can Get the Vaccine? Individuals who meet the Phase 1A & 1B criteria

Individuals must have a Driver’s license or another form of ID as proof of status.

For more information about COVID-19 vaccine availability and locations, visit Or to schedule an appointment at a McLeod facility (McLeod Health Dillon, McLeod Health Cheraw, McLeod Health Clarendon, McLeod Health Loris and McLeod Health Seacoast), please check the McLeod Health website,, which includes clinics with walk-in availability.


Appointments to get the COVID-19 vaccine can be made by people in the following groups:

• Anyone aged 55 and up

• People with increased risk for severe COVID-19 disease

• People aged 16-54 with one or more of the following high-risk medical conditions:

• Cancer (current, not a history of cancer), chronic kidney disease (any stage), chronic lung disease, diabetes (Type 1 and Type 2), Down syndrome, heart disease (congestive heart disease, coronary artery disease, cardiomyopathy, pulmonary hypertension), HIV/AIDS, solid organ transplant, obesity (BMI >30), pregnancy, sickle cell disease.

• People who have a developmental or other severe high-risk disability that makes developing severe life-threatening illness or death from COVID-19 infection more likely

• Frontline workers with increased occupational risk (Examples of frontline workers include, but are not limited to, school staff and daycare workers, manufacturing workers, grocery store workers, law enforcement officers, etc.

• Frontline workers with increased occupational risk are people who:

• Must be in-person at their place of work, and

• Perform a job that puts them at increased risk of exposure due to their frequent, close (less than 6 feet) and ongoing (more than 15 minutes) contact with others in the work environment

• Individuals at increased risk in settings where people are living and working in close contact

• Residents and workers in group home settings for the mentally or physically disabled or those with behavioral or substance abuse conditions

• Workers and residents in homeless shelters

• Workers and residents in community training homes

• State and local correctional facility staff with direct inmate contact

• Correctional and immigration detention facility inmates

• Migrant farmworkers living in shared housing or reliant on shared transportation

• All workers in healthcare and community health settings who have routine, direct patient c contact and were not vaccinated in Phase 1a

“The arrival of the COVID-19 vaccines, including the recent approval of the new one-shot Janssen vaccine, has given us renewed hope for a return to normalcy and a light at the end of the tunnel,” said Dr. Edward Simmer, Director of SC DHEC. “At the same time, we know our fight is not yet over. Until enough of us get vaccinated, we must all continue to wear masks, stay six feet away from others, and avoid crowds, even after we have received the vaccine. In addition, being tested can help reduce the spread of the disease and identify the presence of variants as early as possible.”

Public health officials estimate it will take 70 to 80 percent of the population getting vaccinated in order to reach herd immunity and stop COVID-19.

Based on current vaccine supply levels, DHEC anticipates Phase 1C will begin on approximately April 12, 2021. The phase will include:

• People aged 45 and up

• Essential workers

• This group includes those who work in essential job categories as defined by the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) who are not included in Phase 1B because they do not have frequent, close contact with others in the work environment (examples may include construction workers, delivery drivers, utility workers, etc. who do not have frequent, close and ongoing contact with others).

Phase 2 will begin on approximately May 3, 2021, and will include:

• All South Carolinians aged 16 and up

How to make an appointment?

Online appointments can be made by using or you can call DHEC’s COVID-19 Vaccine Information Line at 1-866-365-8110 for help.

How do people demonstrate eligibility?

When seeking vaccine services, people included in Phase 1B or 1C may indicate eligibility by showing an ID that includes their date of birth, verifying that they meet the criteria for a frontline or essential worker, or by verifying that they have an eligible high-risk medical condition.

To learn more about COVID-19 vaccines, visit

Communications & Public Information Office

(843) 777-2592

555 E. Cheves Street • P.O. Box 100551 • Florence, SC 29502-0551