Illinois health officials reported 33,066 new coronavirus cases over the past week, along with 59 additional deaths, marking slight increases in both metrics from seven days prior as 50 counties across the state are at a "high" community level of COVID-19.
The previous week, the state reported 27,543 new cases, 48 deaths and again 28 counties at "high" community level.
The week before that, the state reported 28,216 new cases and 74 deaths.
In all 3,496,014 cases of coronavirus have been reported in the state since the pandemic began, according to the latest data from the Illinois Department of Public Health. The additional deaths bring the state to 34,257 confirmed COVID fatalities.
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According to IDPH, the preliminary seven-day statewide case rate is 260 COVID cases per 100,000 Illinois residents.
As of midnight Thursday, 1,424 patients were hospitalized due to COVID in the state. Of those patients, 152 are in ICU beds, and 42 on ventilators.
According to the CDC, 50 Illinois counties are now rated at "high" community level for COVID, including many of the counties around the Chicago metropolitan area.
An additional 44 counties throughout the state are now rated at "medium community level.
“With 94 counties now rated at Medium or High Community Level for COVID-19, we are seeing a slow but steady increase in case counts,” IDPH Acting Director Amaal Tokars said in a statement. “We remind Illinoisans that the most important step they can take to protect themselves and their loved ones is to make sure they are up-to-date with vaccines and booster shots. This is especially important for people who are vulnerable to serious medical outcomes. It is recommended that you wear your mask in indoor public places and avoid indoor crowded spaces at this time. If needed, contact a healthcare provider promptly to discuss what treatment is right for you.”
The counties listed at a "high" community level are Cook, DuPage, Grundy, Lake, McHenry, Will, Boone, Bureau, LaSalle, Lee, Ogle, Stephenson, and Winnebago in northern Illinois; Adams, Cass, Champaign, Christian, Clark, Coles, Cumberland, Douglas, Edgar, Fulton, Knox, Livingston, Logan, Marshall, McDonough, Menard, Peoria, Pike, Putnam, Sangamon, Schuyler, Tazewell, Vermillion and Warren in central Illinois; and Alexander, Bond, Calhoun, Franklin, Jackson, Jersey, Madison, Marion, Perry, Pulaski, Union, Wabash and Williamson in Southern Illinois.
Over the past seven days, the state’s daily vaccination average increased to 11,154 doses, per IDPH data. Since last Friday, 78,081 doses were administered across the state.
More than 22 million vaccine doses have been administered in Illinois since vaccinations began in December 2020. More than 69% of Illinois resident are fully vaccinated against COVID, with more than 76% receiving at least one dose. About 53% are also boosted.
At the high level, the CDC recommends that all people in the area wear a mask indoors regardless of vaccination status. Those who are immunocompromised, the CDC suggests avoiding "non-essential indoor activities" in public places.
In the counties at medium risk level, the CDC recommends the elderly and immunocompromised wear a mask in indoor public places and receive COVID vaccinations and booster shots, if eligible.