South Dakota’s COVID-19 vaccination plan is now moving another step forward.
Starting Monday, a portion of the Priority 1D group could start receiving their shots.
According to the state Department of Heath the first wave includes people 80 and older and certain people at high risk.
81-year-old Mel Klein says his Monday was filled with plenty of excitement.
“Well, it felt for the first time I was glad I’m 80 years old,” Mel Klein said.
The Sioux Falls man received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from Sanford Health.
“We’re going to start within that highest priority of 1D that we’ve worked with the State of South Dakota on, so people over the age of 80 is where we’re starting today. In addition, in the near future we may be moving to patients who are on dialysis or have a history of active cancer and are undergoing treatment for that, so that’s some of the other population that we look to be getting to very soon,” Sanford Health Vice President Medial Officer Dr. Mike Wilde said.
According to the South Dakota Department of Health, the 1D population is estimated to be more than 265,000 people.
“We get right now on average about 11,000 doses per week and that’s statewide numbers, not just Sanford, so it’s going to take a while but we’re excited about the opportunity to get going,” Wilde said.
Klein already has an appointment to get his second shot.
“We’re thrilled for people to have the opportunity to get the shot and get back to some kind of normal life,” Klein said.
Sanford Health says it will notify people when the vaccine is available for them.
According to Monday’s update from the state health department, more than 47,000 people have received at least one dose of the vaccine.
More than 9,800 people have received two doses.