SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — Seven more South Dakotans have died due to COVID-19, health officials reported Saturday, Oct. 10, adding up to the deadliest week of the pandemic in South Dakota as the virus continues to surge across the state.

Thirty eight South Dakotans have died in the last seven days due to COVID-19, the most ever in a week since the pandemic's first fatality was reported in early March and raising the COVID-19 death toll to 286. The week has also brought new highs in the number of people actively sick with the virus and in the hospital.

South Dakota is in second-place among all states for the number of new cases per capita, second only to North Dakota, according to a New York Times analysis.

There are 5,533 active cases of COVID-19 in the state, the state Department of Health reported Saturday, the highest ever daily total. There are 267 people in South Dakota hospitals due to COVID-19, down from the all-time high of 284 on Thursday.

Testing revealed another 732 people infected with COVID-19 in the state, raising the total to 27,947. Of those, 22,148 have recovered, with state health officials reporting 378 newly recovered individuals.

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Labs processed tests for 2,332 more people, the Department of Health reported Saturday, raising the number of people tested to 216,485. The daily testing positivity rate was 31%. The positive rate has been in double digits since Aug. 15.

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