Monthly Archives: March 2023

DHEC Launches New Campaign Showcasing Talented and Dedicated Employees

At DHEC, our diverse and talented team of employees share a passion for making a difference. From providing critical environmental, healthcare, public health and administrative support services to responding to natural disasters and being leaders in their fields, our employees are helping improve the lives of South Carolinians every day. To celebrate this work, we’re launching a new “We Are DHEC” campaign.  

“We Are DHEC” recognizes a handful of DHEC’s outstanding employees whose work is helping to move forward our agency’s mission and vision through our Bridge Strategic Plan. Over the course of the next several months, we will be sharing some of your stories and the stories of your peers who embody DHEC’s core values of: 

  • Embracing Service 
  • Inspiring Innovation 
  • Promoting Teamwork 
  • Pursuing Excellence 
  • Advancing Equity 

Thank you to everyone who helped make this campaign possible and to all our employees for the work you do daily to help DHEC achieve our mission “to improve the quality of life for all South Carolinians by protecting and promoting the health of the public and the environment.” We hope these stories inspire you to raise awareness about the great work we are doing at DHEC. 

Ruth Dodd: A Pioneer in TB and Children’s Health 

Ruth Dodd is pictured here with South Carolina’s original Public Health nurses.

March is Women’s History Month, and March 24 is World TB Day, so it’s a great time for us to recognize one of South Carolina’s public health pioneers, Ruth Dodd. 

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International Day of Action for Rivers: Take Action with SC Adopt-a-Stream

International Day of Action for Rivers celebrated on March 14 is a day to celebrate people coming together around the world to say that rivers matter and take action to promote clean waterways.  

One group that promotes education and action for clean waterways is South Carolina Adopt-a-Stream (SC AAS). SC AAS is a partnership program between South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) and Clemson University Center for Watershed Excellence (CU CWE). This program inspires individuals to be educated advocates for their local rivers and streams. The goal of the program is to facilitate a network of water quality stewards educated in nonpoint source pollution and connect volunteers to their watersheds. 

The SCAAS program is a citizen science volunteer water quality monitoring program for South Carolina’s freshwater and saltwater streams. Volunteers complete a free training course which allows them to become certified monitors and ‘adopt’ sites to monitor monthly. Volunteers visit their site to collect baseline, non-regulatory, data. Data collection can include habitat, bacterial, physical, chemical and macroinvertebrate assessments.  

The data collected is then uploaded into the SC AAS database which is available to anyone with internet access to learn about water quality. To increase awareness, the database sends automatic alerts to individuals registered to receive alerts of potential pollution concerns, such as illegal dumping or very high E. coli bacteria counts.  

Volunteer data is used for screening purposes, decision making, STEM education, grants, MS4 permit compliance and watershed management plans. This helps communities protect and restore our beautiful waterways. Volunteers, through monthly monitoring, have identified problems such as water and sewer line breaks, sediment runoff and illegal litter dumping.  

Looking forward into 2023, the team hopes to see 150 new sites be adopted, certifications reach more than 3,000 volunteers and the implementation of the new Lakes Monitoring certification type.  

Here at DHEC, we understand the importance of improving the health of the public and environment, and the SC AAS volunteer monitoring program helps us to further that mission. SC AAS trained volunteers have the potential to increase awareness within their own communities of the relationship between watershed management, land use changes and the role and responsibility of each individual within a watershed to be a better steward of South Carolina’s waters. 

On International Day of Action for Rivers we ask that you consider the role you can play in promoting clean waterways. A great way to do this is to sign up as a volunteer with SC AAS! 

For more information on the SC AAS program and to sign up for the newsletter, visit 

Follow your kidney health during National Kidney Month

As many as 90 percent of Americans who have chronic kidney disease (CKD) don’t know they have it until it’s advanced.

March is National Kidney Month, and DHEC is encouraging everyone to follow their kidney health closely. DHEC recognizes the significant roles health care professionals, renal dialysis facilities and those living with CKD play in the awareness of kidney disease.

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