A press conference May 12, at Williamsburg County Council Chambers was held to update citizens on several topics related to COVID-19. Senator Ronnie Sabb, Representative Cezar McKnight, Williamsburg Regional Hospital Chief Medical Officer Dr. Troy Gamble, and Williamsburg County School District Superintendent Dr. Rose Wilder provided the updates.

Sabb announced free COVID-19 testing at Kingstree High School, Monday, Wednesday and Friday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Testing in Hemingway and other areas is being worked out. Testing will be administered under an outside tent while drivers remain in their vehicles. The test consists of a nasal swab. Accommodations will be made for persons arriving on foot. For transportation assistance contact Sabb’s office at (843) 355-5349 or McKnight’s office at (843) 374-4529 between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. as his business hours have been abbreviated amid the pandemic.

McKnight addressed the May 18, opening of most businesses. He encouraged citizens to listen to public health officials, wash your hands, and do what you feel is best.  “Just because something is open, if you are uncomfortable, you don’t necessary have to go,” said McKnight. “You can continue to use your good judgment and your good common sense to protect yourselves and your family.”  Sabb agreed saying everyone should exercise prudent judgment and good caution.

Gamble announced a set of protective doors installed in the modular hospital’s ICU to better treat patients with the virus. The 300-pound specialty doors were made possible through generous donations. A video of the installation can be viewed online at www.kingstreenews.com. In addition, the hospital is treating patients with COVID-19 with a new treatment. Gamble said if the drugs are administered early, many patients respond positively. The hospital is also partnering with Mayo Clinic to provide convalescent plasma. He reminded viewers that there is no complete treatment available for COVID-19 at this time.

Wilder reiterated the graduation schedule that was published in The News’ May 5, issue. Graduation is scheduled June 6, with each high school hosting the event. Hemingway High School is scheduled for 9 a.m., followed by Kingstree High School at 11 a.m. then C.E. Murray High School at 1 p.m. Two tickets will be provided per student. The ceremony is not open to the public but can be live streamed online from the district website.

A video of the press conference can be viewed online at www.kingstreenews.com.