The most active zone of new coronavirus cases in South Dakota has moved west. For the second consecutive day, Pennington County had more positive tests reported than any other county in the state.
Pennington County cases of coronavirus jumped 27 to a total of 127 Friday. The state lists 101 active cases in the county.
There were 372 tests performed in Pennington County Thursday. A total of 2,231 tests have been completed in the county with 700 of them coming in the past two days.
The state reported 106 new positive tests Friday, however, 122 recovered leading to another drop in active cases in the state. There are currently 1,039 active cases in South Dakota.
The number of patients hospitalized dropped from 91 to 82 even though nine more patients were admitted. There were 16 people discharged and two people in Minnehaha County died Thursday, raising the state's death toll to 50.
Pennington County is starting to see the first signs of true exponential growth in the number of cases. Doubling rates are now consistently in five-day intervals. The May 22 report showed 127 cases and May 18 was only at 58. Similarly, the May 21 report was at 100 cases with 52 cases on May 17.
On May 8, the county had only 18 cases and five active cases. Two weeks later, the number of cases is up to 127 — seven times as many — and active cases number more than 100.
Custer County reported 13 negative tests Friday and Fall River County reported 19 negative tests. Lawrence County reported 46 negative tests and Meade County reported 68 negative tests.
Other positive tests in Friday's report from the state health department included 19 from Beadle County, 16 from Minnehaha, and 14 from Brown. Lincoln County had seven new cases. Codington County reported five new cases and Jerauld and Union counties each had four new positive tests. Buffalo and Roberts counties each had two positive tests and Charles Mix, Oglala-Lakota, Bon Homme, Sanborn, Tripp and Union counties each had one new case.
As state parks and tourist attractions like Mount Rushmore reopen to the public, State Epidemiologist Dr. Josh Clayton said that any tourist who tested positive would be reported as a resident in their home state. However, South Dakota Department of Health workers would assist in contact tracing and notifications from the time they visited the state.
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