RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — The health department’s most recent COVID-19 update shows more tests are coming back positive for the virus.

However, Monument Health is celebrating — for the first time since the pandemic started, there are no hospitalized coronavirus patients within the system.

Nurse Jina Reylonds says it was the best gift to receive on National Nurses Day.

“It shows that what we are doing is working and you can tell by the floors, by the numbers, it feels more numbers but I think everyone is still a little cautious compared to pre-COVID for sure,” Jina Reylonds, CRN at Monument Health, said.

The Monument Health System’s peak number of COVID-19 patients was 110. Today that number is down to zero.

“It’s nice to get back to our hips and knees and stroke patients and our surgical patients back. And just getting back into our specialty. And having the patients be able to walk in the halls when they weren’t able to do that be isolated from COVID,” Reylonds said.

Dr. Shankar Kurra says it’s because people have been doing their part by getting vaccinated and staying home when they are sick.

However, Dr. Kurra reminds everyone the virus is still out there, especially with our test positivity rate above 5% again.

“We are not out of this yet and we can remember this message, we can save more lives,” Dr. Kurra said.

Both Dr. Kurra and Reylonds say it’s a great day for Monument Health and the community.

“We are here today, two years later. We have been very fortunate to make it through and today is an important day,” Dr. Kurra said.

As of Wednesday, there were 25 coronavirus patients in South Dakota hospitals. Our peak was at the end of January when there were more than 400 hospitalized COVID patients.