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Rural South Dakota Doctor On His Town's Struggle With Coronavirus Surge

In the last 24 hours, close to 600 cases of the coronavirus have been diagnosed in South Dakota, an increase of nearly 40% from two weeks ago. The small state has had 333 deaths since the pandemic began.

In North Dakota, the numbers are so high that a Financial Times analysis shows that if the tiny state was a country, it would have the world’s most severe COVID-19 outbreak, surpassing that of the Czech Republic.

Those infection rates are overwhelming rural community hospitals, where medical resources are limited. Dr. Thomas Dean practices at the Jerauld Community Health Center in rural Wessington Springs, South Dakota. It’s one of 32 rural clinics operated by Horizon Healthcare. He joins host Robin Young to talk about the dire situation.

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

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