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South Dakota hits halfway mark for vaccine-eligible people

April 11, 2021 GMT

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Half of South Dakota’s population age 16 and over has received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, the state’s Department of Health announced Saturday.

Health officials opened vaccine eligibility to anyone over age 16 on Monday. Nearly 300,000 in total have received at least a single dose of the vaccine, and about 70% of those people have completed their vaccinations.

“This milestone would not have been possible without the help of our healthcare professionals and all responsible South Dakotans who’ve chosen to be vaccinated,” Secretary of Health Kim Malsam-Rysdon said in a statement. “Vaccinations is the quickest way out of this pandemic.”

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However, Malsam-Rysdon warned that there has been a 75% jump in COVID-19 infections among people in their 20s over the last six weeks.

The state has reported 2,413 people with active infections, including 238 new cases. There are 102 people in the hospital with COVID-19.