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South Dakota confirms first coronavirus cases, including first death

South Dakota confirms first coronavirus cases, including first death
© Greg Nash

South Dakota confirmed its first known coronavirus death Tuesday, one of five known cases in the state, Gov. Kristi NoemKristi Lynn NoemTrump town hall moderator Guthrie's performance praised, slammed on Twitter South Dakota governor blames surge in COVID-19 cases on more testing US coronavirus numbers rise, raising worries about winter MORE (R) said.

The patient, a man in his 60s from Pennington County, tested positive for the virus but had underlying medical conditions. Medical examiner confirmation is still pending, KELO reported.

The other four cases were all travel related, and none of those people are currently hospitalized. They include a Beadle County man in his 40a, a Charles Mix County man in his 50s, a Davison County woman in her 30s and a Minnehaha County man in his 40s. The state does not believe the cases are interrelated.

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“The state’s Public Health Laboratory in Pierre has confirmed the first presumptive positive cases of coronavirus in South Dakota,” Noem said in a statement. “The cases are travel related. While we wait for the CDC to conduct their confirmatory testing, the Department of Health staff is working to identify additional people who came in close contact with these individuals to decrease the spread of illness.”

Noem said the state has about 800 tests available and has requested more.

“Our team has been preparing for weeks, and I am confident we have the right people in place to address this fluid situation. Without panicking, I encourage all South Dakotans to take this seriously – now is the time to prepare and to stay informed,” Noem said.