The status of the coronavirus in South Dakota took a turn on Sunday when Smithfield Foods, one of the largest pork-processing plants in the state, saw 438 workers fall ill to COVID-19, as stated in the Washington Post.
The plant, located in Sioux Falls, is closed indefinitely according to the company’s website.
With these new cases, the state is now close to 1,000 positive cases of COVID-19, according to South Dakota’s Department of Health.
While the virus has hit nearly every part of South Dakota, the state’s Department of Health stated that Minnehaha County has been hit the hardest of them all. As of Tuesday, Minnehaha County has over 750 cases of COVID-19 and 120 people have recovered from the virus. Two people have also died in Minnehaha County from the virus.
Lincoln County has also emerged as a major source of the virus, registering a total of 55 cases as of Tuesday. 27 of the people have recovered so far.
Clay County, which is home to USD, has five positive cases of COVID-19 and four of those people have recovered so far.
One growing question in regards to COVID-19 is racial disparity. The Rapid City Journal said Arizona is one example of a state which has seen a high number of Native Americans contract COVID-19. As for South Dakota, Kim Malsam-Rysdon, South Dakota’s Department of Health Secretary, told the Rapid City Journal “We are not seeing a large racial disparity.”
As of Tuesday, state governor Kristi Noem has not issued a state-wide stay at home order.