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North Dakota coronavirus news, Sept. 16: Western North Dakota Honor Flight postponed (copy)
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North Dakota coronavirus news, Sept. 16: Western North Dakota Honor Flight postponed (copy)

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The latest North Dakota coronavirus news: honor flight, insurance assistance and more.

Honor flight

The Western North Dakota Honor Flight planned for this year has been postponed until next spring.

Honor flights send military veterans to Washington, D.C., to visit veterans memorials. The National Honor Flight Network requires that participants be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or provide negative test results within 72 hours prior to departure.

"COVID requirements levied by the National Honor Flight Network are in direct conflict with legislation enacted during the 2021 North Dakota legislative session concerning requests for proof of vaccination," Western North Dakota Honor Flight officials said in a statement. "Once COVID requirements are relaxed, we will resume flight operations."

The Legislature earlier this year approved a limited ban on so-called “vaccine passports,” which show proof of vaccinations.

Reinsurance aid

North Dakota is one of 13 states receiving millions of dollars in federal funding from the American Rescue Plan Act to boost health care coverage.

State Insurance Commissioner Jon Godfread said the $5.8 million will bring reimbursements from the federal government to North Dakota’s reinsurance program to nearly $20.5 million for the 2021 plan year.

The program helps cover high insurance claims and reduce risk for insurers. Funding is from so-called federal "pass-through" dollars and a state share covered by assessments from health insurance companies.

Testing and vaccines

A comprehensive list of free COVID-19 testing offered by local public health units in North Dakota can be found at health.nd.gov/covidtesting

In Bismarck, PCR and rapid antigen tests are administered Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday, Monday and Friday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the strip mall at 2805 Morrison Ave., Suite A.

People who have registered for COVID-19 testing through TestReg.nd.gov now can access results for tests completed after June 10 through a state service called the Citizen Portal. Instructions can be found at https://bit.ly/3jqiudf.

North Dakotans can go to vaccinefinder.org or call 866-207-2880 to see where COVID-19 vaccine is available near them.

Custer Health in Mandan offers the vaccine to the general public.

Morton County residents should go to https://www.ndvax.org and search for "Custer Health" or call 701-667-3370 to register. Custer Health has a vaccination clinic at 1100 32nd Ave. SE in Units D and E, off Memorial Highway.

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