With so many numbers being quoted it is hard to know your chances of getting and surviving COVID-19.

The average infection and death rate are pretty low, but when you look into the details they show a clearer picture that may make you feel much better or much worse about your chances. Not all states publish the same data but we were able to access age, infection rates, and death information for Minnesota and South Dakota as of August 21, 2020.

At 864,000 South Dakota’s population is spread thin at 11 people per square mile, with only half living in towns and cities. Minnesota’s population is 6 times larger with over 5.5 million people, 64 per square mile but over 80% of the state lives in urban areas.

Totals make good news

According to the totals, your overall chance of catching COVID-19 is just over 1 in 100. Your overall chance of dying from the disease is less than 3 in 10,000. Even if you catch the virus your chance of dying is just over 2 in 100. It becomes much more of a concern as you get older.

Rates of infection and death

The odds of getting infected are pretty close.

The following charts show the infection rate and percent of COVID deaths of South Dakota and Minnesota combined.

The chart changes when you compare the percentage of people who die from COVID-19 by age group.

Over 90% of the total 1900 deaths in the two states happened to people over 60 years old.

Minnesota vs South Dakota Approach to Covid

South Dakota has gained notoriety for not forcing multiple shutdowns or enforcing the wearing of masks. The state also made national news when it went ahead with its annual 10 day Sturgis Motorcycle rally. The event started August 7 and brought over 450,000 people into the area from across the country. Few of the attendees wore masks or practiced social distancing.

Minnesota has implemented multiple shutdowns and masks requirements. The overall infection rates for the two states are almost identical at 1.26% for South Dakota and 1.23% for Minnesota. The death rate for those infected is higher in Minnesota where more people over the age of 70 passed away from the disease. Currently, both states fall into the middle of the rest of the country’s statistics for COVID-19 infections and deaths.

On August 22, 2020, South Dakota reported 251 new cases, the highest day since May 8th. The infection rate is accelerating adding 2.3% to the total infected in one day for a total of 11,135. There have been 160 deaths reported.

Minnesota reported 746 new cases, 15 of those were traced back to attendance at the Sturgis rally. This day added 1% to the total infected of 68.867. There have been 1,753 deaths reported in the state.

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