More South Dakotans now eligible for COVID-19 vaccines
Increased vaccine availability leads to expanded list
PIERRE, S.D. —South Dakota is expanding the list of who is eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccinations.
Health Secretary Kim Malsam-Rysdon says the state is scheduled to get nearly 19,000 doses next week. That doesn’t include federal doses going to the Indian Health Service, Veterans Administration, or the new federal retail vaccination program.
The increase in vaccine availability means the state is ready to expand who can get the vaccine.
“Because we are seeing increased access points and increased vaccine supply in the state, we are now expanding to those individuals with one or more underlying conditions,” she said.
The Department of Health has a full list of qualifying underlying conditions on its website.
Secretary Malsam-Rysdon says approximately 80-thousand South Dakotans have received both doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.
One unknown remains whether those who are fully vaccinated are still able to carry and transmit the virus to others. So State Epidemiologist Doctor Joshua Clayton cautions those who have been received both doses still need to take precautions.
“Until such time that we have additional data to prove that those individuals are not able to transmit the virus, the mitigation… Using precautions is really the key factor for everyone, regardless of vaccination status,” said Dr. Clayton.
The Health Department continues to urge everyone who’s eligible to get vaccinated, and to continue taking precautions whether you’ve been vaccinated or not.