With just over two weeks left in Illinois' stay-at-home order, all regions across the state are now on track to meet the metrics needed to move into the next phase of reopening, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said Thursday.
"Every region is so far meeting all the metrics," Pritzker said, noting, however, that to truly meet the mark for entering a third phase, a region must average below a certain threshold for several weeks.
Earlier this week, the Northeast region was not hitting the numbers required to enter phase three of the state's five-phased reopening plan. That region includes Cook, McHenry, Lake, Kane, DuPage, Kendall, Grundy, Will and Kankakee counties.
As of Thursday, however, the region's positivity rate fell just below the threshold needed - one of multiple factors required.
In order to enter phase three, a region "will be required to have a positivity rate of 20% or less and an increase of no more than 10% over a 14-day period."
According to data provided by the governor, the Northeast region reported a positivity rate of 19.9% as of Thursday.
At the same time, the North Central region sat at 8 percent, while the Central region reached 5.7 percent and the Southern region is at 7.5 percent.
No region can officially move forward until May 29, under the parameters of the governor's plan.
That's, in part, because regions cannot see an increase in hospital admissions for COVID-like illness for at least 28 days. Every region, including the Northeast region, remains on track to hit that mark.
All regions have also seen a decrease in hospitalizations since May 1, including a 23.3 percent decrease in the Northeast region, a 45.8 percent decrease in the North Central region, a 44.8 percent decrease in the Central region and a 61.8 percent decrease in the Southern region.
The third requirement for moving forward is an available surge capacity of at least 14 percent for medical/surgical beds, ICU beds and ventilators. All four regions have more than 14 percent availability in all three of those areas, with the Northeast region currently at 17.3 percent availability in beds, 18.6 percent ICU availability, and 63.4 percent availability of ventilators.
If the regions maintain their numbers in all metrics, they will be eligible to move to phase three as early as May 29. In that phase, gatherings of 10 or fewer people will be allowed, while more non-essential businesses, including hair salons, will be allowed to open with strict social distancing and capacity limit guidelines.