Bismarck  (CSi)  Governor Doug Burgum held a COVID-19 News Briefing Friday at the state capital in Bismarck.

Joining him were Molly Howell, NDDoH Immunization Program Manager, and Dr. Joshua Ranum of West River Health Services in Hettinger.

Burgum said, at this point North Dakota is number one in the nation with the percentage of vaccine dosages administered at 68 percent, 4th in the nation per capita.

He restated mitigation efforts…physical distancing, and frequent hand washing with soap and water. He said those are practical ways, to break the chain of transmission, noting those who are asymptomatic.

He said the state emergency is not over, and will not be rescinded in the near future,  adding that state officials continue to work with local officials during the COVID Emergency, concerning strategies.  He pointed out that President-Elect Biden has announced the $1.9 million COVID Rescue Plan, with the dollars to be distributed to states.

Burgum says hospitalization have decline in North Dakota since November, but has increased the past few days.

He noted that college students are returning to campus, and K-12 schools are increasing in person learning, which may  increase the number positive cases being spread.

Burgum said the North Dakota National Guard continues to assist in various areas of the COVID fight.


Since mid-November when the state’s COVID-19 numbers peaked and the additional mitigation measures were implemented:

  • Active cases have dropped by over 80 percent, from 10,224 to 1,675;
  • Hospitalizations due to COVID-19 have decreased by nearly 74 percent, to 88 hospitalized today; and
  • The state’s 14-day test positivity rate is down roughly one-fourth from its peak, at 4.13 percent today, its lowest level since late August. According to Johns Hopkins University, North Dakota’s seven-day positivity rate is now the fourth-lowest rate in the nation, at 4.7 percent.

With those numbers, Burgum said, the statewide mask mandate will be allowed expire on Monday January 18, 2021, at 8-a.m., but he highly urges all residents continue to mask-up, noting local political subdivision may continue to have their own mask and other mandates, under emergency orders,and the state supports those locally enacted protocols. 

The Valley City Emergency Order was amended on January 5, under the North Dakota Moderate Risk protocols.

The Jamestown Emergency Order including the mask mandate continues until the pandemic is over, or until otherwise amended.


Also on January 18, at 8-a.m., business protocols will move from mandates to guidelines, that limits capacity for bars, restaurants and event venues.

The extension to Jan. 18 allowed for a 14-day incubation period to pass after Christmas and New Year’s to ensure the state wouldn’t see a surge in cases.

All North Dakota counties will remain in the Yellow, Moderate Risk level.

He said safe and effective vaccines have arrived, that will greatly assist in returning the state to normal activities., a key component in the “3 pronged” approach.

NDDoH Immunization Program Manager,Molly Howell said the state have received over 76-thousand doses of vaccine, with 69 percent of those administered, with reports of around 95 percent effectiveness.

Phase 1-B of vaccination distribution will start to be administered, at 10,000 doses to be administered per week.  A vaccine locator is posted on the State Health Department web site, and at the Hot Line, 1-866-207-2880.

Dr. Joshua Ranum of West River Health Services in Hettinger, explained antibody therapeutics.

Almost all hospitals in North will have the medications available for IV infusions.  He said vaccinations and the antibody therapeutics will greatly help in the mitigation of the virus, along with treatment of positive cases.

He stressed the importance of individuals who test positive for COVID-19 to immediately ask their doctors if they’re a candidate for early treatment with monoclonal antibody therapies that have been shown to reduce mortality and the need for hospitalization.



COVID 19 Stats

Fri. Jan. 15, 2021


Barnes County

New Positives:  2

Total Positives: 1270

Active:  18

Recovered: 1220


Stutsman County

Antigen tests (BinaxNOW, etc.) were added to the website beginning Dec. 9.


Woman in her 70s


New Positives:  4

Total Positives:  3208

Active:  42

Recovered: 3086

More updates anticipated from NDoH

COVID-19 Test Results 
The results listed are from the previous day. Additional data can be found on the NDDoH website.


7,258 – Total Tests from yesterday*

1,442,795 – Total tests completed since the pandemic began

233 – Positive Individuals from Yesterday*****

185 – PCR Tests | 48 – Antigen Tests
95,599 – Total positive individuals since the pandemic began

3.82% – Daily Positivity Rate**


1,675 - Total Active Cases

-89 Individuals from yesterday.  

225 – with a recovery date of yesterday****

92,551 – Total recovered since the pandemic began

88 – Currently Hospitalized

+10 – Individuals from yesterday.


8 – New Deaths*** (1,373 total deaths since the pandemic began)



  • Woman in her 80s from Golden Valley County.
  • Woman in her 70s from Grand Forks County.
  • Woman in her 70s from McHenry County.
  • Man in his 60s from Ramsey County.
  • Man in his 70s from Ransom County.
  • Woman in her 70s from Stutsman County.
  • Man in his 60s from Ward County.
  • Man in his 90s from Ward County.



  • Adams County – 3
  • Barnes County – 2
  • Benson County – 5
  • Billings County – 2
  • Bottineau County – 2
  • Burleigh County – 22
  • Cass County – 47
  • Cavalier County – 2
  • Dickey County – 2
  • Emmons County – 1 
  • Foster County – 2 
  • Golden Valley County – 2
  • Grand Forks County – 19
  • McHenry County – 1
  • McKenzie County – 2
  • McLean County – 1
  • Morton County – 10
  • Mountrail County – 3
  • Ramsey County – 13
  • Ransom County – 1 
  • Renville County – 2
  • Richland County – 5
  • Rolette County – 10
  • Sargent County – 1
  • Sioux County – 2
  • Stark County – 10
  • Stutsman County – 4
  • Towner County – 2
  • TraillCounty – 3 
  • Walsh County – 9 
  • WardCounty – 22 
  • Wells County – 1 
  • Williams County – 20 


* Note that this includes PCR and antigen; it does not include individuals from out of state. 

**Individuals (PCR or antigen) who tested positive divided by the total number of people tested who have not previously tested positive (susceptible encounters). 

*** Number of individuals who tested positive with a PCR or antigen test and died from any cause while infected with COVID-19. Please remember that deaths are reported as they’re reported to us by the facility or through the official death record (up to 10-day delay). 

**** The actual date individuals are officially out of isolation and no longer contagious.

*****Daily positive numbers include people who tested with a PCR or antigen test. Totals may be adjusted as individuals are found to live out of state, in another county, or as other information is found during investigation.

For descriptions of these categories, visit the NDDoH dashboard.

For the most updated and timely information and updates related to COVID-19, visit the NDDoH website at, follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and visit the CDC website at