As a public service, Shaw Media will provide open access to information related to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) emergency. Sign up for the newsletter here
The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 1,941 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 35 additional deaths Wednesday.
The seven-day rolling average of Illinois’ positivity rate increased slightly to 3.7%. The state received the results of 52,311 COVID-19 tests in the 24 hours leading up to Wednesday afternoon, marking a relatively high day for testing.
Illinois now has seen 266,151 total cases of the virus and 8,367 people have died. The state has conducted a total of 4,863,138 tests since the start of the pandemic.
As of late Tuesday, Illinois had 1,565 COVID-19 patients in the hospital, a decrease of 19 patients over the past 24 hours. Of those, 345 were in intensive care units, and 143 were on ventilators.
In a news conference held Wednesday afternoon, Gov. JB Pritzker called upon the U.S. Congress to pass another COVID-19 stimulus bill to renew financial supports for individuals as well as state and local agencies.
"[On Tuesday,] I directed all agencies to prepare to cut operating budgets by 5% this fiscal year and potentially by 10% next year," Pritzker said.
Without another stimulus bill, "that translates directly into potential layoffs and a massive reduction of essential services for families across our state," he added.
Pritzker announced Wednesday that the state would extend its eviction moratorium for an additional 30 days to support tenants struggling to pay rent in the current economic climate.
The governor also called upon the Illinois State Board of Elections to use $4 million in funds from the Help America Vote Act to start up an emergency grant program to subsidize the use of ballot drop boxes and to help recruit more election judges across the state.
The average positivity rate of Illinois' South Suburban Region 7, which contains Will and Kankakee Counties, has now dropped below the state's 6.5% threshold marking the severity of community spread, Pritzker said.
The region has been subject to additional mitigation measures since Aug. 26 after reporting more than three consecutive days of positivity rates above 8%.
Pritzker said he is proud of the region's diligence in bringing its positivity rate down in a timely manner, calling it a "testament to a community's ability to turn their ship around."
"IDPH will continue to watch that positivity over the next few days and if that trend holds for three days, we will remove the resurgence migitations and return the entire region to Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan," he said in the press conference.
Almost every health region in the state has reported either a stable or decreasing positivity rate over the past few weeks including the other region currently facing additional mitigation measures - Region 4, Pritzker said.
Regional update: According to a July 15 update to Gov. Pritzker's COVID-19 response plan, the state will be tracking public health metrics in a slightly different way to monitor any potential resurgences of COVID-19. Additional restrictions can be placed on any of the state's 11 health regions if the region sustains an increase in its average positivity rate for seven days out of a 10-day period.
A region may also become more restrictive if there is a seven-day increase in hospital admissions for COVID-19-related illness or a reduction in hospital medical/surgical beds or ICU capacity below 20%. If a region reports three consecutive days with greater than an 8% average positivity rate, additional infection mitigation will be considered through a tiered system of restriction guidelines offered by the IDPH.
The North Suburban region (McHenry and Lake counties) has seen six days of positivity increases and zero days of hospital admission increases. The region's positivity rate remained flat at 6.2%. Currently, 45% of medical/surgical beds are available and 60% of ICU beds.
The West Suburban region (DuPage and Kane counties) has seen four days of positivity increases and three days of hospital admission increases. The region's positivity rate decreased slightly from 5.8% to 5.7%. Currently, 37% of medical/surgical beds are available and 47% of ICU beds.
The South Suburban region (Will and Kankakee counties) has seen two days of positivity increases and three days of hospital admission increases. The region's positivity rate decreased from 6.9% to 6.4%.
Additional mitigation measures from the IDPH have been placed on the region after its positivity rate exceeded 8%. If it can hold below 8%, it will avoid additional mitigations. To return to the standard Phase 4 restrictions, the region will need to maintain an average positivity rate of less than or equal to 6.5% over a 14-day period. Currently, 35% of the region's medical/surgical beds are available and 38% of ICU beds.
The North region (Boone, Carroll, DeKalb, Jo Daviess, Lee, Ogle, Stephenson, Whiteside and Winnebago counties) has seen two days of positivity increases and one day of hospital admission increases. The region's positivity rate decreased slightly to 6.1%. Currently, 46% of medical/surgical beds are available and 46% of ICU beds.
The North-Central region (Bureau, Fulton, Grundy, Henderson, Henry, Kendall, Knox, La Salle, Livingston, Marshall, McDonough, McLean, Mercer, Peoria, Putnam, Rock Island, Stark, Tazewell, Warren and Woodford counties) has seen one day of positivity increases and three days of hospital admission increases. The region's positivity rate decreased to 6.1%. Currently, 45% of medical/surgical beds are available and 43% of ICU beds.
Chicago has seen two days of positivity increases and four days of hospital admission increases. The region's positivity rate decreased slightly to 5.1%. Currently, 27% of medical/surgical beds are available and 36% of ICU beds.
Suburban Cook County has seen three days of positivity increases and three days of hospital admission increases. The region's positivity rate decreased from 5.8% to 5.5%. Currently, 33% of medical/surgical beds are available and 38% of ICU beds.
To see how other regions across the state are doing, see the full IDPH dashboard here.
Newly reported deaths include:
- Bureau County: 1 male 80s
- Clinton County: 1 male 90s
- Coles County: 1 female 80s, 1 female 90s
- Cook County: 1 male 30s, 1 male 50s, 2 females 60s, 1 female 70s, 2 male 70s, 1 female 80s
- DuPage County: 1 female 60s
- Hancock County: 1 male 80s
- Henry County: 1 female 60s
- Jasper County: 1 male 60s
- Kane County: 1 female 70s
- Lake County: 1 male 50s, 1 female 60s
- Lawrence County: 1 female 80s
- Livingston County: 1 male 80s
- Macon County: 1 male 80s
- Madison County: 1 female 50s, 1 female 60s, 1 female 80s, 1 male 80s
- Massac County: 1 female 90s
- Peoria County: 1 male 90s
- Perry County: 1 female 70s
- Rock Island County: 1 male 70s
- St. Clair County: 1 female 60s, 1 female 70s
- Wayne County: 1 female 50s
- Will County: 1 male 70s
- Williamson County: 1 female 90s