South Dakota reports increase in new COVID-19 cases Wednesday

Published: Feb. 24, 2021 at 2:08 PM CST
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - New COVID-19 cases and COVID-19 hospitalizations in South Dakota increased, while active cases continue falling according to the department of health.

The Department of Health reported 262 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, bringing the state’s total known cases to 111,808.

Wednesday’s numbers reported 40 new cases in Pennington County, nine new cases in Meade County, five in Oglala Lakota County, three each in Lawrence and Fall River counties, one each in Bennett, Haakon and Perkins counties.

In a media briefing, State Epidemiologist Joshua Clayton noted the state saw a slight uptick in new cases last week. The state’s daily average over the past seven days was 2% higher than the previous seven days. Despite the marginal increase in cases, active cases continued a downward trend Wednesday. There are currently 1,891 active cases in the state, down nearly 40 from the previous day.

Officials reported one additional COVID-19 death Wednesday, bringing the state’s total to 1,864.

Current hospitalizations rose by 11 to 102.

State health officials say one in five South Dakotans old enough to get vaccinated for COVID-19 has received at least one dose. According to the Department of Health, 22% of the state’s population has received at least one dose as of Wednesday. Just under 11% have received both doses required to maximize immunity.

These statistics factor only people age 16 and over, as that is the minimum age limit the FDA has authorized Pfizer’s vaccine for. Moderna’s minimum age is 18.

It also includes vaccines distributed by federal entities, including Indian Health Services and the Department of Veteran Affairs. These vaccine numbers are not included in other metrics the Department of Health reports on the state’s COVID-19 dashboard. For example, the dashboard lists the total number of South Dakotans who have received at least one dose at 127,096 - this number only includes vaccines overseen by the Department of Health, and does not include IHS or VA inoculations.

Sec. of Health Kim Malsam-Rysdon said the state will see an increase of 1,000 new vaccine doses next week, bringing the state’s allotment to 18,830.

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