TEGA CAY, S.C. — Young people are the fastest-growing demographic of new, positive cases of Coronavirus, South Carolina state health officials confirmed Thursday.
Cases of coronavirus are climbing among people younger than 30, and in children and teens.
According to data provided by DHEC, there has been a 414 percent increase in new COVID-19 cases since April in people between the ages of 21-30.
Among teens and children, the spike is even sharper: state health officials report a 966 percent increase in the 11-20 age group.
Health officials point to the increase in time children are spending in summer camps, at parks and playgrounds now that students have finished school for the year.
“This data tells us that younger South Carolinians particularly teenagers and young adults are not taking social distancing seriously, says Dr. Brannon Traxler, the physician consultant for DHEC.
States across the country are reporting similar increases in cases in young demographics.
The trend, troubling to the South Carolina High School Sports League.
“We run a strong risk of not being able to have sports,” commissioner Jerome Singleton told fellow members of the organization on a conference call Thursday.
Sports teams across the state are currently in a “phase one” which permits them to hold conditioning practices.
The sports league is considering moving into “phase 1.5” which would allow for student-athletes to share balls. The league did not set a time frame for that phase, nor did they finalize any specifics of what else that phase would entail.
Singleton says they plan to move “cautiously” with any decisions they make.
“Oops is not an acceptable excuse that we can make especially when we are talking about the lives of our student-athletes and coaches.”