Current map of cases in Sully County

Two members of the Onida community were diagnosed with COVID-19 last week, bringing the total number diagnosed in the county since the pandemic began in March to three.

The first diagnosed case in the county was reported on Easter Sunday, so it was seventeen weeks between that first COVID case and the cases diagnosed last week.

According to figures released by the South Dakota Department of Health, Sully County has had three COVID-19 cases, with one active and two recovered. Since two of the cases were diagnosed just last week, the Watchman questioned the DOH about the figures and learned that the DOH uses the Centers for Disease Control guidelines for defining a recovery: A positive case moves from active to recovered status based on CDC guidelines for removal from isolation.

The cdc.gov website relates that ‘Accumulating evidence supports ending isolation and precautions for persons with COVID-19 using a symptom-based strategy. Specifically, researchers have reported that people with mild to moderate COVID-19 remain infectious no longer than 10 days after their symptoms began, and those with more severe illness or those who are severely immunocompromised remain infectious no longer than 20 days after their symptoms began. Therefore, CDC has updated the recommendations for discontinuing home isolation as follows:

Persons with COVID-19 who have symptoms and were directed to care for themselves at home may discontinue isolation under the following conditions:

• At least 10 days* have passed since symptom onset and

• At least 24 hours have passed since resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and

• Other symptoms have improved.

*A limited number of persons with severe illness may produce replication-competent virus beyond 10 days, that may warrant extending duration of

isolation for up to 20 days after symptom onset. Consider consultation with infection control experts.

To date, South Dakota has tested 121,477 persons and 9,663 have been diagnosed with the coronavirus. There are 1,146 active cases and 8,371 recovered cases. Statewide, there have been 146 COVID-19 related deaths in South Dakota. For the month of August, the state is at 27% of its testing goal.