Not surprisingly, a new survey shows that nearly everyone living in South Dakota has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in a very personal way.

The results of the recent South Dakota Covid Impact Survey reveal that nearly 96 percent of respondents said they knew someone who tested positive for coronavirus. More than 70 percent said a friend or acquaintance had been infected, 65 percent had one or more family members impacted.

The poll of more than 3.000 registered voters in the Mount Rushmore State was conducted by the SDSU Poll, a research group in the School of American and Global Studies at South Dakota State University.

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When it came to severe cases of coronavirus, more than half of South Dakotans (56%) said they knew someone who had been hospitalized because of COVID-19, with 45 percent of those cases being a friend and 17 percent a family member.

Nearly 40 percent of state residents said they know someone who has died of the virus. 33 percent said that person was a friend; seven percent had a family member pass away.

When it came to taking measures to combat the pandemic, the survey revealed a big division among state residents.

Currently, a little more than half of South Dakotans been vaccinated, and 82 percent of those people reported wearing a mask most or all of the time on a consistent basis.

Among the unvaccinated, only 26 percent were regular mask wearers.

As it has across the nation, politics played a big role in how residents of the Mount Rushmore State viewed the topic of a proposed vaccine passport, that would allow vaccinated people greater ability to access public settings.

About 71% of Democrats in South Dakota said they are 'somewhat' or 'very supportive of the idea of a passport, while roughly the same number of Republicans in the state said they're are 'somewhat' or 'strongly opposed' to the proposal.

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