Oct 6, 2021: COVID Weekly Update & Rankings

I thought it might be interesting to see where South Dakota is nationally in COVID-19 rankings – it’s been a while since I’ve summarized this.

South Dakota COVID-19 Comparison Data: October 5, 2021 The following summarizes South Dakota standings nationally as posted in the Washington Post at 7:00 pm CT on 10/5/21 (based on Hopkins data and state websites) (https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2020/national/coronavirus-us-cases-deaths/?itid=hp_pandemic-guide-box). Note: 100K means 100,000.  Red font = ranked among the poorest 20 states; green font = ranked among the best 20 states; black font = ranked in the middle (between 20-30) out of 50 states.

Summary – Among the counties with the ten largest cities, Brookings has the:

  • 2nd lowest number of average daily cases per population size in the last seven days
  • lowest number of cases per population size since the beginning of the pandemic
  • lowest number of deaths per population size since the beginning of the pandemic
  • 7th highest percentage of the county population that have received at least one vaccine

Based on the Department of Health dashboard posted as of October 5th, all counties with the ten most populated cities are in the highest level of community spread (high).  Community spread is updated every Monday and is based on two indicators:  1) the rate of new cases per week and 2) the weekly percent PCR Test positivity rate – both calculated from the data reported during the previous calendar week (Sun-Sat).  If the two indicators suggest different transmission levels for a county, the higher level is selected.  The CDC and SDDOH define high community spread as 100 new cases per week or greater per 100K population (14+ new cases/day per 100K) OR weekly % PCR test positivity rate of 10% or greater. 

Weekly Updates

A few highlights: 

  • I reduced the number of slides from 39 down to 28.  I removed the cumulative graphs and one of the changes in the age distribution of Brookings County cases over time.  If anyone misses one of those slides, please let me know, and I’ll put it back. 
  • Brookings County continues to look good – fewer new cases, actives cases, and lower test positivity this week compared to last week – all good signs.  However, hospitalizations increased and Brookings County had its first COVID death since last February.

SDDOH updates the cumulative number of cases at accredited institutions of higher ed monthly (https://doh.sd.gov/documents/COVID19/School-College_COVID_cases.pdf):

Brookings County (highest level of spread)

  • 4,982 total cases:  63 new cases this week (high spread) vs. 81 in the previous week:
    • 29% were under 20 years of age (vs. 37% last week)
    • 41% were 20-39 years (vs. 34% last week)
    • 16% were 40-59 years (vs. 20% last week)
    • 14% were 60 years or older (vs. 9% last week)
  • Since September 29th, the largest percentage increase in the percentage of cases have been in the 0-9 year (4% increase) age group. However, the largest increase in the number of cases has been in the 30-39 year age group (n=14).
  • 210 active cases (264 last week)
  • Test positivity (PCR) this past week was 6.9% compared to 7.3% last week.  Ideally, you want this below 5%, and the lower, the better.  A high percentage indicates there are likely many more cases out there – get tested if you have been exposed or have symptoms.
  • There were 5 new hospital admissions among Brookings County residents in the past week vs. 4 in the previous week (total = 153).  Brookings Hospital currently has 1 COVID hospitalized patient.  In Sioux Falls, Avera has 40 COVID-occupied beds (16 ICU) and Sanford has 55 (19 ICU).
  • There was 1 new death reported among Brookings County residents this past week (total = 38). 
  • The percentage of people vaccinated did not increase much this past week, with 45% of Brookings County fully vaccinated vs. 44% of South Dakotans (similar percentages as last week).

South Dakota (highest level of spread)

  • 146,995 cases: 2,449 new cases this week vs. 2,801 in the previous week:
    • 24% were under 20 years of age (vs. 27% last week)
    • 31% were 20-39 years (vs. 29% last week)
    • 23% were 40-59 years (vs. 23% last week)
    • 22% were 60 years or older (vs. 21% last week)
  • 6,735 active cases (7,461 last week)
  • Test positivity (PCR) this past week was 14.0% – similar to 13.6% last week.  Ideally, you want this below 5%, and the lower, the better. 
  • 136 people were admitted to in-state hospitals this week vs. 134 last week:  
    • 5% were aged less than 20 years (vs. 4% last week)
    • 15% were 20-39 years (vs. 21% last week)
    • 21% were 40-59 years (vs. 25% last week)
    • 59% were 60 years of age and older (vs. 51% last week)
  • 221 people currently hospitalized vs. 205 hospitalized last week (66 currently in the ICU vs. 57 last week)
  • 2,167 deaths:  34 deaths reported this week vs. 24 in the previous week: 
    • 1 was 20-39 years
    • 7 were 40-59 years
    • 26 were 60 years of age and older


  • 44.78 million cases:  726,375 new cases this week vs. 812,523 in the previous week
  • 724,728 total deaths:  13,506 deaths this week vs. 14,355 in the previous week 
  • Numbers of American deaths to keep in mind:
    •     7,054 in Iraq & Afghanistan
    • 116,516 in World War I
    • 405,399 in World War II
    • 521,915 in World Wars I & II combined
    • 580,135 in World Wars I & II and Vietnam War combined
    • 600,135 in World Wars I & II, Vietnam & Korean Wars combined
    • 675,000 in 1918 Influenza Pandemic
    • 724,728 in current COVID-19 Pandemic
    • 750,000 in Civil War


  • 236.5 million cases: 3.04 million cases this week vs. 3.24 million in the previous week
  • 4.83 million deaths: 52,529 deaths this week vs. 56,459 in the previous week 

Take care and think of others.

Published by Bonnysblog78398238

I'm interested in numbers.

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