Feeding South Dakotans During A Pandemic

Mar 17, 2020

In The Moment ... March 17, 2020 Show 775 Hour 2

Distribution centers for Feeding South Dakota remain open and are distributing food to partners and programs across the state. They are working with school districts, after school programs and other organizations regarding the distribution of meals to children, families, seniors and others who need them. Times are especially difficult for an organization like this and here to talk about this is Matt Gassen, he's the CEO of Feeding South Dakota.

Adria Botella

Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken announces a new fund to help those who come under financial hardship because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The One Sioux Falls fund received $700,000 from local businesses in its first 18 hours. The mayor is also asking city council to allot another $250,000 in general funds.

Mayor TenHaken says the fund is offered through the Sioux Falls Area Community Foundation.  

Mental Health & COVID-19

Mar 17, 2020

In The Moment ... March 17, 2020 Show 775 Hour 1

Jenifer Jones / SDPB

Governor Kristi Noem says she’s holding a townhall with state legislators Monday night.

When asked if she may call a special legislative session to respond to the coronavirus, Noem says they still have veto day ahead of them.

That’s a day typically reserved for overriding any gubernatorial vetoes of legislation.

The South Dakota Board of Regents has announced it’s moving all public university classes online for two weeks. 

Avera Chief Med Officer Talks COVID-19

Mar 16, 2020

In The Moment ... March 16, 2020 Show 774 Hour 2

The situation with Coronavirus in South Dakota is changing rapidly, as expected. Here for an update, we welcome Dr. Kevin Post. He's Chief Medical Officer with Avera Medical Group. 

Education and Healthcare reporting on SDPB is supported by Monument Health of Rapid City

Sioux Falls School District

The state’s largest school district is creating a plan in the event schools stay closed beyond this week. The Sioux Falls School District is also continuing to provide meals for students.

Sioux Falls Superintendent Brian Maher says the district’s primary role is the development of students.

“But right now our role has changed from an academic responsibility to a social responsibility,” he says.

Maher says this week’s closure may only be the beginning, and he encourages families to come up with a plan in the event of an extended school absence.

City of Sioux Falls

The Sioux Falls Board of Health is considering regulations to bring before the City Council that limit gatherings to 50 people or less in city facilities. This is a drop from last week’s limit to gatherings of 250 people or less to prevent spread of COVID-19.

Jill Franken is the Public Health Director for the City of Sioux Falls. She says this new limit recommendation is based on updated guidance from the federal Centers for Disease Control issued on Sunday.

Sanford Chief Med Officer On COVID-19

Mar 16, 2020

In The Moment ... March 12, 2020 Show 772 Hour 2

Americans, and South Dakotans, have drastically changed the way they live, all in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Much changed over the weekend. Dr. Dan Heinemann, M.D., is Chief Medical Officer for Sanford Health Network and joins us with more.

Education and Healthcare reporting on SDPB is supported by Monument Health of Rapid City

Healthcare professionals are continuing to urge “social distancing” as a preventative measure against the spread of COVID-19.

It doesn’t mean you have to stay home, but specialists say avoiding crowds can make a big difference in slowing the spread of the virus.

Dr. Jennifer Hsu is an infectious disease physician with Sanford Health. She says COVID-19—like all other respiratory illnesses—is typically spread through large droplets.

News: Mar 7 -13

Mar 13, 2020

We continue with our coverage of COVID-19, talk CAFOs with South Dakota Newswatch, hear an SDPB special report on Native American foster care, and much more in this week's In the Moment news podcast.

Governor Declares State of Emergency, Closes Schools

Mar 13, 2020

Governor Kristi Noem has declared a state of emergency, which allows state agencies to accept funding or other resources to treat and stop the spread of COVID-19.

In a press conference on Friday, the governor announced several other precautions—including statewide school closures.

Governor Noem is calling for all public k-12 schools to close next week. She’s encouraging private schools to do the same.

“I’m recommending the schools use this time to clean their facilities and to prepare for the following week,” she says during the announcement.

With healthcare professionals encourage social distancing as a precaution against coronavirus spread, faith communities are considering adjustments to their practices.

As for the Catholic Church, both the Diocese of Rapid City and the Diocese of Sioux Falls have released differing changes to mass.

The Diocese of Rapid City announced precautionary adjustments to mass on March 6th, before South Dakota had confirmed cases of COVID-19.

State officials say there are no new presumptive positive cases of COVID 19. There are 41 pending test kits that they say will get announced by noon on Friday.

Governor Kristi Noem says they’re testing and monitoring seven individuals who came in close contact with the eight presumptive positive cases. She says none of those cases participated in large community events.

Noem says the state website devoted to COVID-19 information will update case information at noon every day.

South Dakota’s three largest healthcare systems are announcing new visitor policies and other precautions against the spread of coronavirus. All new procedures take effect within the next week. 

Monument Health, Sanford and Avera released statements on their responses to COVID-19 on Thursday.

Jenifer Jones / SDPB

A South Dakota lawmaker is being tested for an illness and is away from the capitol on the last day of session.

Republican Speaker of the House Steven Haugaard announced on the house floor that Glenham Republican Spencer Gosch will no longer be in the capitol.

“Speaker Pro Tempore Gosch was having some problems yesterday,” Haugaard says. “He got more ill overnight and went in to be tested. So he cannot have contact with anyone for a couple of days while they’re doing this testing. So, it’s a serious event.”

On the Other Hand With Kevin Woster

Mar 12, 2020

In The Moment ... March 12, 2020 Show 772 Hour 1

The first pasque flowers are blossoming in South Dakota. State residents brace for a pandemic. And politics goes on as usual.

Kevin Woster's SDPB blog is online at

Good Samaritan Society Preps For COVID-19

Mar 12, 2020
Good Samaritan Society

In The Moment ... March 12, 2020 Show 772 Hour 1

Nursing homes and long-term care facilities across the state are taking preventative measures to protect residents from infection with coronavirus.  Randy Bury is president of Good Samaritan Society. He joins us with insight.

Education and Healthcare reporting on SDPB is supported by Monument Health of Rapid City

South Dakota is now identifying eight presumptive positive cases of COVID 19 in the state.

Two males in Minnehaha county now test positive, as well as another male in Bon Homme county.

Governor Kristi Noem says those who are elderly or have compromised immune systems should make wise decisions.

News Special: COVID-19 In SD

Mar 11, 2020

The spread of a novel coronavirus has South Dakotans washing their hands, stocking up on cleaning supplies, and eyeing their financial portfolios. 

SDPB’s “In the Moment” brings you this podcast special to answer some of the questions we are all asking.  

Sanford Health

Health experts say COVID 19 is here to stay.  Dr. Wendell Hoffman is an Infectious Disease Specialist with Sanford Health. He says that it will become one of several viruses physicians will test for.  He says there are short term and long-term preparations that need to be in place for the coronavirus as well as the flu and common cold.  He says the public can be confident the health care systems are prepared.



Adria Botella


A South Dakota company is working on a therapeutic to treat COVID 19 – the disease caused by the coronavirus. S-A-B Biotherapeutics has been working on other coronavirus strains and has had safety trials already conducted.  C-E-O Eddie Sullivan says they are using what they have learned to quickly advance therapeutics for COVID 19.



Working On A COVID-19 Therapeutic

Mar 11, 2020

In The Moment ... March 10, 2020 Show 770 Hour 1

SDPB is bringing you the latest information on the coronavirus and COVID-19, including research into the nature of human disease.  Eddie Sullivan, Ph.D. is president and CEO of South Dakota's SAb Biotherapeutics and joins In the Moment to discuss the complexity of finding a solution. 

Education and Healthcare reporting on SDPB is supported by Monument Health of Rapid City

Dr. Hoffman Talks COVID-19

Mar 11, 2020
Sanford Health

In The Moment ... March 11, 2020 Show 771 Hour 1

The South Dakota Department of Health has announced the first confirmed cases of COVID-19. And though most South Dakotans were not surprised by the announcement, now is the time to remind you about basic preparedness.  Dr. Wendell Hoffman is an infectious disease doctor with Sanford Health. He joins us to talk about the virus, when to call your doctor, and precautions that help the most vulnerable among us. 

Education and Healthcare reporting on SDPB is supported by Monument Health of Rapid City

Melissa Hamersma Sievers / SDPB

South Dakota is confirming five positive cases of COVID 19—the disease cause by coronavirus, with two test kits pending.

Those five positive cases are sprinkled throughout the state. One case in Pennington County is related to a man in his 60’s who died on Tuesday.

The cases are considered presumptive positive. Governor Kristi Noem says they’re waiting on confirmation from the Center for Disease Control.


South Dakota’s public health lab has confirmed five cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by coronavirus. Governor Noem is partially activating the state’s emergency operations center. She says the state and its healthcare professionals are prepared to respond.

The confirmed cases are in Beadle, Charles-Mix, Davison and Minnehaha counties. The fifth case in Pennington county is related to a man in his 60’s with underlying health issues who died on Tuesday.

Governor Noem says COVID-19 is not confirmed to be the cause of death.

The Special Olympics of South Dakota is canceling this weekend’s state basketball tournament in Pierre as a precaution against the spread of coronavirus. 

It’s also suspending all sports activities in the state until March 31st.

Darryl Nordquist is the President and CEO of the Special Olympics South Dakota. He says the decision to cancel this weekend’s tournament comes after direction from the Special Olympics’ international office.

Noem Says COVID-19 Testing Available In State

Mar 5, 2020

Governor Kristi Noem says testing for the COVID-19 coronavirus is now available at the South Dakota state public health lab.

Noem says the general public in South Dakota is still at a ‘low risk’ of seeing infection.

“We do have the ability to do that should someone with symptoms that they want to have tested would arise within our state’s borders.”

Noem says the state is coordinating with the federal government and Vice President Mike Pence’s interagency task force.

SD's Plans For A Coronavirus Outbreak

Feb 26, 2020

In The Moment ... February 26, 2020 Show 761 Hour 1