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Epidemiologist Says SD Needs To Share Daily, Not Weekly COVID-19 Data

Department of Health

The South Dakota Department of Health stopped providing daily COVID-19 updates earlier this month. It now updates the data every Wednesday.  

Elizabeth?Racz is an epidemiologist at South Dakota Mines. She says an increase in out-of-state tourists and the rise of the more contagious Delta variant should prompt state officials to provide daily reports again.  

“It’s like getting a weather report once a week which is kind of helpful but not great during tornado season. And the problem with COVID on top of that is you can’t just look at the sky and say, ‘oh there’s a big thunderhead building.’ We need those data to make decisions. Whether you’re a mother trying to decide whether you send your child to school or whether or not you are trying to make a decision about how you are going to interact with large populations of people coming into the region.” 

Racz says epidemiologists need daily data to prepare for the pandemic. For example, it can help them know how much personal protective equipment to order.  

This story comes from a recent interview on SDPB's weekday radio program, "In the Moment." Listen to the full interview below.