coronavirus illinois

Can You Start Expanding Your Social Circle? Pritzker Says Not Yet

The reason, he said, is because people who think they are healthy could still have coronavirus

NBCUniversal, Inc.

After weeks in isolation, it can be tempting to want to expand the people you self-isolate with, but Gov. J.B. Pritzker says you should wait.

The reason, he said, is because people who think they are healthy could still have coronavirus.

"For a little while longer, it's very important that people who are asymptomatic - you feel fine - but that you stay away from people who you have not already been in close contact with, and that you're not quarantine together with them," he said during his daily press briefing Monday. "Because just because you are asymptomatic does not mean that you do not have coronavirus."

A flood of new research suggests that far more people have had the coronavirus without any symptoms. The head of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said last month that 25% of infected people might not have symptoms.

So, how long should you wait before you can start expanding your circle? Until there is a treatment available, Pritzker said.

"For a little while longer, as we await a the development of a treatment - and you saw that one was already approved, although it's only for severe cases, but there are 70 of those being tested by the FDA or look for approval by the FDA," Pritzker said. "And so, you know, I would just stay away from your elderly relatives in particular and don't quarantine together with people you haven't already been around."

Illinois reported more than 2,000 new coronavirus cases Monday and nearly 50 additional deaths. That lifts the statewide total to 63,840, with 333,147 tests administered since the pandemic began. There were also 46 additional deaths on Monday, bringing the statewide death toll to 2,662.

Pritzker has urged residents to focus on the state's positivity rate, or the number of tests that come back positive compared to the total number of people tested.

Monday's positivity rate sat at 17 percent, up from 15 percent a day earlier. Overall for the pandemic so far, the state's total positivity rate is currently at just over 19 percent.

Meanwhile, in nearby Indiana, much of the state is beginning phase two of its reopening plan.

Contact Us