A note from Teresa Arnold, AARP SC State Director
AARP has been working to promote the health and well-being of older Americans for more than sixty years. In the face of the Coronavirus outbreak, AARP is providing information and resources to help older people and those caring for them protect themselves from the virus and prevent it spreading to others.
Let me encourage you to visit AARP and this page for the latest updates on coronavirus as well as information tailored for older adults and family caregivers. This state resource page is a work in progress as we all move forward.
Please check back often as this page will be updated as we receive official news and information. Email AARP SC with your questions, concerns or need for assistance.
Most of all, #StayHome and check in with your family and friends.
Teresa Arnold, AARP SC state director
For the most up-to-date information and resources follow us on social media.
AARP South Carolina Resources
2020 South Carolina Voting Information
You can find answers to your voting questions here on our 2020 South Carolina Elections page updated regularly to reflect the most accurate information on what you need to know to vote safely in South Carolina.
Telephone Town Halls
August 2020 Coronavirus Telephone Town Hall: The Psychological Impact of COVID-19 explored the physiological
effects of COVID-19 with nationally recognized guests Patrice Harris, M.D., immediate past president of the American Medical Association and Gerald Harmon, M.D., president-elect of the American Medical Association. A recording of the call can be found here.
June 2020 Coronavirus Telephone Town Hall: Caregiving Amidst a Pandemic featured SCDHEC epidemiologist, Dr. Jonathan Knoche and Amy Goyer, who is an author, speaker and consultant specializing in caregiving and family issues. She serves as AARP’s national family & caregiving expert. Stephanie Blunt, Trident Area Agency on Aging director, was also on the call. Learn about the top ways to support caregivers and their loved ones by listening to the recording here.
May 29, 2020 Coronavirus Telephone Town Hall: Health Disparities with guests Dr. Linda Bell, DHEC State Epidemiologist, Dr. Thaddeus John Bell, Founder of Closing the Gap in Health Care, as well as a special message from Sen. Tim Scott. Listen to an audio recording of the call here.
April 28, 2020 Coronavirus Telephone Town Hall with special guest Congressman Joe Cunningham CD1. Listen to an audio recording of the call here.
April 22, 2020 Coronavirus Tele-Town hall with Rep. William Timmons, Jr. SC District 4. You can find a recording of the call here.
April 1, 2020 Teletown Hall with Rep. James Clyburn and Sen. Lindsey Graham. Also Mike Leach, director SC DSS and Jamie Suber, SC DEW. The run time is right at one-hour. Listen to the recording via this Facebook link.
March 20, 2020 Teletown Hall with Gov. Henry McMaster, DHEC director Rick Toomey, State Epidemiologist Dr. Linda Bell, Department on Aging Director Connie Munn and Dr. Timothy J. Lyons. Listen to the recording here.
To listen to the previous AARP COVID-19 tele-town halls, please click here.
Is your loved one in a nursing home?
If you have a spouse, sibling, parent, or other loved one in a nursing home, you may be worried about their safety and well-being because of the coronavirus pandemic. You can find more information and resources related to nursing homes in South Carolina on our AARP South Carolina nursing home resources page.
Here are six questions to ask
DHEC releases names of SC nursing homes with COVID-19 infected staff, patients
Fraud Watch Network from AARP
Call our free helpline at 877-908-3360 if you or a loved one suspects a scam.
AARP Community Connections
You may be isolated, but you don’t have to be alone. Across the country, people are informally organizing new online mutual aid groups to stay connected, share ideas, and help those most affected by the Coronavirus. Whether you want to start a group, find a group, or get assistance yourself, our directory can help you connect with people in your community. Click here to sign up.
You may also request a call from an AARP volunteer. To request a call click here or call 1-888-281-0145 to leave your information and a call back.
AARP Caregiver Resources
Family Caregiving How-To Video Series: The "How-To" videos and resource guides for family caregivers are on specific medical and nursing tasks. This series includes preparing special diets, managing incontinence, wound care, mobility, and managing medications. The videos and resource guides, many of which are available in both English and Spanish, are free of charge. Click here for the series.
Click here for a checklist for caregivers.
CARES Act - Stimulus Money
April 17, 2020 Information regarding Coronavirus Tax Relief and Economic Impact Payments - The IRS has started issuing payments. This link includes the check your payment status. >> Click here
April 17, 2020 Keep your stimulus payment in your wallet and out of scammers' hands. AARP CEO Jo Ann Jenkins shares tips from AARP's Fraud Watch Network to keep your money safe. Click here to read Jo Ann's tips.
South Carolina Government
Resources and Agency
South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SC DHEC)
For updates on South Carolina Coronavirus
For general questions about COVID-19, call the SC DHEC Care Line 1-855-472-3432. Staff are answering calls 8 a.m.-6 p.m. every day.
Here is a link to South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control's testing location finder.
South Carolina Emergency Management Division
South Carolina's official emergency response organization for natural and other disasters. Agency provides a live feed for any official news conference or announcement from Governor Henry McMaster.
South Carolina Office of Regulatory Staff (Utilities)
SC ORS has a dedicated COVID19 page with information regarding the Governor's request not to allow utility companies to shut off a service during this crisis.
South Carolina Department on Aging
Click on link above or call 1-800-868-9095
GETCARESC service guides, offer tips and resources for caregivers and seniors. For more personalized help, please call your local Area Agency on Aging. You can find your local office using the search tool on this page. Find out what types of care are available to help your loved one live independently. Click or call 1-800-868-9095.
South Carolina Department of Social Services
For information on assistance programs such as SNAP click here or call 1-800-616-1309.
South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce
Unemployment Benefits? SCDEW offers a online process available 24/7
State of South Carolina official website
SOUTH CAROLINA RESOURCES
South Carolina Appleseed Legal Justice Center
SC Appleseed fights for low income South Carolinian's to overcome social, economic and legal injustice. Click here for resources covering food access, housing, consumer protection, healthcare and school district meal plans. The information is also available in Spanish.
Apply for Benefits Over the Phone
If you are practicing social distancing or can’t get to a location to apply for SNAP or Medicaid, you can call the SC Thrive Contact Center to apply for benefits over the phone. The SC Thrive Contact Center can be reached Monday through Friday, 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM at 800.726.8774.
There are food pantries and food banks across the state. Here is a statewide listing. Please call ahead for eligibility, hours and location.
Veterans Outreach and Support
Any Veteran with symptoms such as fever, cough or shortness of breath should immediately contact their local VA facility. VA urges Veterans to call before visiting – you can find contact information for your closest VA facility. Alternatively, Veterans can sign into and send a secure message to VA or use telehealth options to explain their condition and receive a prompt diagnosis. Upon arriving at VA, all patients will be screened for flu-like symptoms before they enter in order to protect other patients and staff. A VA health care professional will assist you with next steps once this screening process is complete. At this time, VA is urging all visitors who do not feel well to please postpone their visits to VA facilities.
April 30, 2020 You can find additional information and resources for veterans on our aarp.org/veterans page as well as a free COVID-19 resources page specific for veterans.
Centers for the Disease Control and Prevention
For National Updates from the CDC2-1-1 Information and Referral Center
Just dial the numbers 2-1-1 and you’ll be connected with a live operator who will provide the latest information regarding available resources. If you have resources or services to add to the 2-1-1 database, please dial 2-1-1 and they will work with you to get them added.
Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRC) 1-800-Age-Line
The ADRC acts as a no wrong door for those needing assistance by providing benefits screening, education and options counseling on long term care services and supports. It is also an entry point for professionals, caregivers, and family members to seek resources and assistance on behalf of their clients, friends or family members. All callers are screened for assistance utilizing a universal screening tool that prevents the caller from having to give the information numerous times. Referrals are made on behalf of the individual needing assistance and follow-up is provided for quality assurance. The ADRC will offer extended assistance to those who choose an advocate to assist with application for services and benefits.
Contact your local Area Agency on Aging (AAA) and Aging & Disability Resource Center (ADRC) at 1-800-AGE-LINE (1-800-243-5463).
Disaster Distress Helpline
Provides 24/7, 365-day-a-year crisis counseling and support to people experiencing emotional distress related to natural or human-caused disasters.1-800-985-5990 or by Text Message TALKWITHUS to 66746
U. S. Department of Health and Human Services/Community Living
Information for Older Adults and People with Disabilities about Coronavirus Disease 2019.
Elder Care Locator – 1-800-677-1116
Emergency Preparedness Resources