Charleston County Library to pause indoor programs

Published: Jan. 4, 2022 at 4:31 AM EST|Updated: Jan. 4, 2022 at 9:12 AM EST
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC/AP) - The Charleston County Public Library announced it will temporarily suspend its indoor programs amid a rise in new COVID-19 cases.

“For the health and safety of patrons and staff, indoor programs, events, classes, and appointments have been temporarily suspended at all branch locations,” a message on the library’s website states.

The most recent update on COVID-19 case counts from the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control listed more than 8,800 new cases, a single-day pandemic record. DHEC did not release new data on Monday because of the New Year’s holiday observance. The agency is expected to release four days’ worth of data on Tuesday.

Health officials urged people to take precautions up to and including avoiding altogether holiday gatherings fearing a rise in new cases.

The omicron variant is more likely to infect people, even if it doesn’t make them very sick. The variant’s surge coincided with the holiday travel season in many places.

People sometimes mistakenly think the COVID-19 vaccines will completely block infection, but experts say the shots are mainly designed to prevent severe illness. The vaccines are still doing their job on that front, particularly for people who’ve gotten boosters. But breakthrough infections appear more likely with omicron.

There is no word from the library on when it will resume indoor programs.

Copyright 2022 WCSC. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.