How did 2020 COVID-19 numbers add up? Original

FILE – This 2020 electron microscope image provided by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases – Rocky Mountain Laboratories shows SARS-CoV-2 virus particles which cause COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells cultured in a lab. According to two new studies released on Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2020, people who have antibodies from infection with the coronavirus seem less likely to get a second infection for several months and maybe longer. (NIAID-RML via AP)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — South Dakota nearly reached 100,000 coronavirus cases for 2020 but the numbers would still make it the state’s second most populated city.

The South Dakota Department of Health reported on Dec. 31 that the state had 90,050 confirmed cases or PCR test cases and 8,995 probable cases from antigen testing for a total of 99,045 COVID-19 cases.

The total cases would make it the second most populated city in the state, behind Sioux Falls and ahead of Rapid City.

The 99,000 cases are still well behind what Gov. Kristi Noem shared as very early projections in March. Noem has said in the few news conferences since March 23 that projections from early models had been revised to reflect more realistic project transmission as more was learned about the pandemic.

Noem said at March 23 news conference that up to 30% of South Dakotans could get COVID-19. That’s roughly 265,398 of the state’s 884,659 residents.

The 2020 estimated population of Sioux Falls is 190,750 and 76,000 for Rapid City.

So far, the state has not reached that 30% infected mark but how did the state do compared to other model projections?

On March 23, the CDC said about 31 to 70% of adults 85 and over with COVID-19 and 31 to 59% of adults 65 to 84 with COVID-19 will require hospitalization. Intensive Care Unit hospitalization will be required for 6 to 29% of those 85 and over and 11 to 31% for those 65 to 84.

In South Dakota, more than half of the 5,639 hospitalized individuals were aged 60 and over. As of Dec. 31, 3,565 individuals over 60 had been hospitalized with COVID-19, according to the DOH.

About 21,700, or about 22%, of all 99,045 COVID-19 cases were in individuals 60 and older in South Dakota.

Although the state has not yet reached, and does not appear it will reach, original projections from March, more recent projections from several models are more in line with actual numbers as of Dec. 31.

A COVID-19 model from Iowa State University. predicted 98,907 COVID-19 cases and 1,472 deaths in the state by Dec. 31.

A model from UCLA projected 1,302 deaths by Dec. 31 and about 107,000 cases.

The Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington predicted that the state would have 1,527.08 COVID-19 deaths by Dec. 31. The state would also have 1,135.72 new infections on Dec. 31 if the current situation including no statewide mask mandate continued. The model also predicted the state would have 1,669 new tests on Dec. 31.

Bob Pagano model projected that South Dakota would have 1,041 deaths by Dec. 1 and 1,727.8 deaths by Dec. 31. 

All six models either account for no changes in measures such as social distancing or changes in such measures.


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