PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — The COVID-19 vaccination has arrived in South Dakota and there will be enough in the next weeks to vaccinate the key frontline health care workers, South Dakota State Department of Health Secretary Kim Malsam-Rysdon said on Wednesday.
The state will receive 7,800 doses of Pfizer vaccine and expects 14,600 doses of Moderna vaccine next week. The total doses of the two vaccines will be enough to cover the 19,000 people designated as priorities for the first phase, she said.
The DOH has added a feature on its website that allows the public to track the vaccine doses and number of people who receive it. The DOH information also shows the number of vaccines and people vaccinated in each county.
As of Wednesday’s update, 405 individuals have been vaccinated, according to the DOH website. The number includes 153 in Minnehaha County, 74 in Lincoln and 67 in Pennington. Those three counties were top priorities for delivery of the vaccine, DOH officials said.
Twenty-three people have received the vaccine in Codington County. The South Dakota Wing of the Civil Air Patrol said it delivered doses of the Pfizer vaccine on Dec. 15 to Prairie Lakes Healthcare System in Watertown, which is in Codington County.
Prairie Lakes officials said in a KELOLAND News story they would be vaccinating their frontline workers. It would also be a distribution site for members of the regional health care network.
Nursing home residents are among the priority individuals to receive the vaccine. So far, 204 individuals aged 80 and older have been vaccinated.
Malsam-Rysdon said the DOH will provide the vaccination from the federal government in a series of steps, according to its COVID-19 vaccination plan.
It will be at least several months until the general public can receive a vaccine.
The Veterans Administration facilities in the state and the health care facilities on Tribal Lands will be provided the vaccine through federal officials. Malsam-Rysdon said the state will not be involved in those vaccination plans.
What to know about the COVID-19 vaccine in South Dakota
Who is charge of the vaccine distribution?
The South Dakota Department of Health developed a 64-page COVID-19 vaccination plan. According to the plan, the DOH has communication with leaders from 32 “points of dispensing” throughout the state.
Who gets a vaccine first in South Dakota?
There is a 3 phase approach of vaccine administration — all focused on allocation.
- Phase 1: “Potentially Limited Doses Available”
- Phase 2: “Large Number of Doses Available, Supply Likely to Meet Demand”
- Phase 3: “Likely Sufficient Supply, Slowing Demand”
Throughout Phase 1 and Phase 2, South Dakota’s three primary health care systems — Avera, Sanford and Monument Health — will provide the vaccination services to “priority populations.”
Who is in Phase 1 of getting the vaccine?
The state determined through an allocation criteria four key priorities
- Risk for acquiring infection
- Risk of severe outcome due to infection
- Risk of negative societal impact
- Risk of of transmitting infection to others
Based on that criteria, health care workers, first responders and older adults living in congregate settings will receive the first vaccines as described in Phase 1A and Phase 1B.
When will vaccine be available for me?
On Jan. 6, the SD DOH released a new document showing when it expected vaccine availability for certain groups in South Dakota. You can see that document below. Phase 1D, which includes people two underlying health conditions, people 65-years or older and teachers, is expected to start in February. Vaccine for all South Dakotans, isn’t expected until May 2021.
Who has the vaccine in my county?
While the SD DOH oversees the vaccine the distribution, five different health systems have been charged in overseeing vaccine distribution and administration in their area. The five systems are Avera, Sanford, Monument, Mobridge Hospital and Northern Plains Health Network.
READ: South Dakota’s COVID-19 64-page Vaccination Plan
DOH officials also briefly discussed the state’s percent positivity rate for the last seven days which is 9.9% as of Wednesday.
But as of Dec. 15, only nine counties had weekly rates lower than 9.9%, according to the DOH website. Some county’s had percent positive rates as high as 44.39% and 33.73%.
DOH epidemiologist Dr. Josh Clayton said the weekly table rates for each county and the last seven day rate posted for the entire state will only match one day a week because of how they are tabulated.
The percentage includes the last seven full days that the DOH has RT PCR tests for, Clayton said. The county table percentages are based on the past week, Clayton said.