North and South Carolina Institutes of Medicine Release Joint Brief on COVID-19

COLUMBIA, S.C. (April 9, 2020) – The rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic has brought much of the world to a halt as increasing infection rates have led to stronger federal, state and local actions to address the impact and limit the spread. To aid decision-makers, the South Carolina Institute of Medicine and Public Health (IMPH) and the North Carolina Institute of Medicine (NCIOM) released a joint brief that examines the COVID-19 pandemic and state and federal policy changes that will impact residents.

At the federal level, Congress has worked quickly to fund public health efforts to stem the spread of the virus, help those impacted by the economic slowdown, and support the economy.

In South Carolina, numerous actions have been taken to address the crisis caused by the spread of the novel coronavirus:

  • Governor Henry McMaster continues to issue executive orders to limit the spread of the virus and connect citizens with food and health care resources.
  • Public schools are closed through the end of April.
  • Universities are ending their semesters online.
  • The state tax deadline has been delayed until July 15.
  • The Chief Justice has halted all evictions.
  • The South Carolina General Assembly and Governor McMaster have allocated $45 million to the Department of Health and Environmental Control to combat COVID-19.
  • The Board of Medical Examiners and the Board of Nursing implemented procedures to issue temporary licenses for out-of-state physicians, physician assistants, nurses and respiratory care practitioners without fee for 90 days.

Read more about South Carolina’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in the full policy brief.

“Our team is so grateful to the health and human service professionals on the front lines of this crisis,” notes Maya Pack, associate executive director at IMPH. “Our hope is that this brief will help leaders and decision-makers to understand the impact of the crisis on health in the Carolinas.”

Understanding Policy Impact on Carolinians

The joint brief is helpful to leaders and decision-makers because it serves as an easy reference for understanding how all of the extremely significant federal legislation passed recently will impact our state and help the people of the Carolinas.

The brief also includes a timeline of what’s happened in the Carolinas; a recap of executive orders from each governor; a summary of regulatory changes implemented to make response operations easier in a time of crisis; and more.

A Long-Term Situation

The COVID-19 pandemic and associated economic crisis have been developing for months, yet we are most likely in the early stages of a long-term situation that will require ongoing state and federal actions to protect the health and well-being of Americans. The NCIOM and IMPH will continue to monitor federal actions and their potential impacts on the residents and communities of Carolinas.