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South Dakota Exhausts First Pfizer Batch with 7,822 Vaccinations—Much More to Come

The South Dakota Department of Health reports that our healthcare personnel have administered 7,844 coronavirus vaccines from the good folks at Pfizer since we received our first shipment of doses last week. That’s pretty much the whole first Pfizer shipment, all intended for our frontline healthcare workers.

KELO-TV’s Anna Peters tweets that Minnesota has only used 2,999 of the 46,000 doses it received last week. Holy cow, Minnesota, get with the program! We don’t want y’all bringing the coronavirus back across the border to us!

Since the Trump Administration has abdicated any responsibility for coordinating the nationwide vaccination drive, the press has to call around to all fifty state health departments to get complete data. in an update posted yesterday, the New York Times figured 614,000 coronavirus shots had been given nationwide, with South Dakota among the leading states in percentage of population vaccinated:

New York Times, percentage of population vaccinated against coronavirus, data from state reports Dec. 16–18, map retrieved 2020.12.22.
New York Times, percentage of population vaccinated against coronavirus, data from state reports Dec. 16–18, map retrieved 2020.12.22.

NBC says that as of yesterday, South Dakota was 21st out of 33 states reporting data on vaccines administered.

But don’t break out the pom-poms yet: due to the Trump Administration’s inability to do any math beyond a single simple division problem, the straight-population-proportional distribution will leave states with larger percentages of their people in high-risk categories means that, even if South Dakota is able to deliver the shots it gets with all due haste, it will take us a while longer than other states to get all the shots we need for our health care workers and long-term care residents:

The inequity of the per capita formula is evident in Wyoming and South Dakota, neighboring states in the northern Plains.

About 9.5% of South Dakota’s adult residents fall in Phase 1a of Operation Warp Speed’s plan, according to Surgo and Ariadne’s estimates. They would not all be vaccinated until the government has distributed 24.5 million doses across the country. South Dakota would be the third-to-last state to cover its highest-risk group, behind New York and Massachusetts.

Health care workers and nursing home residents account for just 5.8% of Wyoming’s population. They would be inoculated when 14.8 million doses of vaccine have been sent out nationwide – the second-fastest state to cover its highest priority group, behind Nevada [Dennis Wagner, Donovan Slack, and Aleszu Bajak, “Covid-19 Vaccine Plan Means Some States Will Lag in Getting Shots to Highest-Risk Groups,” USA Today, 2200.12.22].

So, hey, doctors and nurses at Sanford, Avera, Monument, Mobridge Regional, and Watertown Prairie Lakes, Indian Health Service (their figures appear to be over and above the state’s dose count), Civil Air Patrol—keep up the good work. But everybody, recognize that getting those shots in everyone’s arms is going to take some time. Until that happy day of 80% vaccination, we all have to keep up the daily work of masking up, keeping clean, and keeping apart.


  1. Richard Schriever 2020-12-22 20:25

    “Until that happy day of 80% vaccination…… ”

    Nope – we will need to maintain distancing and masking and handwashing and so on after that as well. We have NO certainty @ the time-relative effectiveness of the vaccine.

    FWIW, my doc had COVID-19 at about the same time I did – 9-10 months ago. He had a positive clinical test, I didn’t get tested (none available). NEITHER of us had detectable anti-bodies as of 2 weeks ago.
    “How long will it last?” is the question today. That question needs to be answered BEFORE we drop the precaution.

  2. grudznick 2020-12-22 20:43

    Mr. H is saying here that he should have been in charge of the distribution, and that the whiniest of the teachers should get the first shots. Am I reading that right?

    grudznick celebrates the giving of shots to some, whomever they may be, and has already given up my early spot in line for at least one of the out-of-state name-callers frequenting the bloggings here.

  3. jerry 2020-12-25 19:51

    Essential workers here should get the French treatment. We used to lead, now we can’t seem to get it right on who is doing the work here. France sees the value of it’s immigrants and for how they have stepped up. Time for the rest of us to do the same.

    “PARIS — Nine months after its president declared “war” against the coronavirus, France announced Tuesday that it has fast-tracked hundreds of citizenship applications from foreign frontline workers who have distinguished themselves in the battle.

    “Foreign workers gave their time and swung into action for all of us during the Covid crisis,” said Marlène Schiappa, France’s junior minister for citizenship. “It is now up to the Republic to take a step toward them.”

    The beneficiaries include not just health care workers but also garbage collectors, housekeepers and cashiers, Ms. Schiappa said.” New York Times 12.22.20

    In Sioux Falls, these immigrants sicken and die to put a pork chop on your plate. In Huron, they sicken and die to feed you. In Aberdeen, they sicken and die to fee us. These “essential workers” should be fast tracked and given citizenship immediately as they have proven their mettle as fellow countrymen. Their Christmas gift should be fast tracked citizenship from the country they are literally dying for each day.

  4. o 2020-12-25 20:16

    Jerry, compound this with the fear immigrants – especially undocumented immigrants – have of coming forward for a vaccination for fear of being caught and punished/deported. Our MAGA/GOP/Conservative anti-immigrant mania will ensure COVID finds a safe harbor in our communities and devastates our families living on the edge already.

  5. jerry 2020-12-25 23:13

    O, “For 4 years I’ve been asking God to rid us of this evil man. And for 4 years God has not listened to me. Sometimes it really sucks being an atheist.”

    Be careful out there man. Now we have an even more contagious and dangerous mutation to this virus that is probably gonna make 2020 seem calm. We have no plan to vaccinate the millions of us in short order, nor do we have the vaccine itself. If anyone thinks that current republican governance means actual security, they are high.

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