Gov. Noem: New COVID-19 tests to be used in S.D.

Coronavirus

PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — Gov. Kristi Noem reminds South Dakotans the efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 will take time. During a media update on Tuesday, she said the state is prepared for this marathon.

Noem said South Dakota was the last state in the nation to reach 100 positive cases of COVID-19. She said the state is 15th in percentage tested per million.

Noem said the state received supplies from the Strategic National Stockpile. She also said the state received new instant test supplies. She said the state will be able to use those faster tests to stop “hot spots.”

Noem thanked all the health care workers and people working to take care of others, saying, “Working together, we’ll all get through this.” 

As the state reviews ideas to slow the spread of the virus, Noem says closing South Dakota borders has been part of the discussion but officials aren’t ready to act on that idea yet.

Noem says South Dakota cities have the authority to close/pass ordinances to limit crowds at businesses. She said her office helped draft the bill to expand that authority to counties but on Veto Day on Monday, lawmakers voted to not pass that legislation.

Noem said the state’s National Guard has been helping with the state’s COVID-19 response. She said Secretary of Health Kim Malsam-Rysdon has been working with the National Guard to help move resources and plan for possible outbreaks.

As the weather warms up, concerns over possible flooding in parts of the state also go up. Noem said more water will keep going downstream. She said the state dealt with flooding all year in 2019 and the state is prepared to help protect people and property in 2020. She said a slow snowmelt has helped.


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