coronavirus illinois

Illinois Coronavirus Updates: Booster Shots, Mask Mandate Latest, Vaccines for Kids

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Federal regulators are expected to authorize the mixing and matching of COVID-19 booster shots this week, but who should do it and when?

Will an indoor mask mandate still be in place for the holiday season? Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker weighed in.

Plus, there's a new update on coronavirus vaccinations for children under the age of 12.

Here's what you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic across Illinois today:

Moderna, J&J COVID Booster Shots Near Authorization. Here's What to Know

With both the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines nearing authorization for their COVID booster shots, what still needs to happen and what can you expect?

Here's what we know so far.

White House Unveils New Details of Plans to Vaccinate 28 Million American Children

Children age 5 to 11 will soon be able to get a COVID-19 shot at their pediatrician's office, local pharmacy and potentially even their school, the White House said Wednesday as it detailed plans for the expected authorization of the Pfizer shot for younger children in a matter of weeks.

Federal regulators will meet over the next two weeks to weigh the benefits of giving shots to kids, after lengthy studies meant to ensure the safety of the vaccines.

The plan is pending both FDA and CDC approval.

Read more here.

Court Hearings Expected Wednesday Amid Legal Battle Over Chicago Vaccine Mandate

Multiple court hearings are set for Wednesday amid a legal battle over Chicago's coronavirus vaccine mandate now at the center of a debate between the city and its police union leader.

There are a pair of court hearings set for Wednesday in connection with the mandate, including one hearing concerning the temporary injunction barring Fraternal Order of Police President John Catanzara from publicly encouraging CPD members to defy the requirements.

A motion will be heard Wednesday seeking to have the judge who granted that order recuse herself.

Read more here.

21 Chicago Police Officers on No-Pay Status as Brown Says COVID Vaccine Mandate Can ‘Save Lives'

Chicago Police Supt. David Brown says that 21 officers have been placed on no-pay status as a result of failure to put their information into the city’s vaccination portal, a decision he feels is necessary to help ensure the safety of both officers and of the public amid the COVID pandemic.

According to Brown, approximately 67.69% of the department’s workforce, both sworn officers and civilians, have entered their data into the vaccination portal as of Tuesday. Of those employees, 82% say that they are fully vaccinated against COVID, while the other 18% will now be subjected to twice-weekly COVID testing through the end of the year.

In all, 21 officers have been placed on no-pay status as a result of their refusal of a direct order from the department’s Internal Affairs division to put their information in the vaccine portal.

Read more here.

Illinois Prepares to Increase Booster Shots as More Residents Set to Become Eligible

Gov. J.B. Pritzker delivered a COVID-19 update for Illinois Tuesday morning.

Illinois health officials detailed a plan Tuesday to get more COVID-19 booster shots in the arms of residents across the state as more doses become available.

With more residents expected to become eligible for boosters in coming weeks, the Illinois Department of Public Health plans to increase education and provide skilled nursing facilities to administer shots.

“We know that COVID-19 vaccines are life-saving," Gov. J.B. Pritzker said in a statement. "For our seniors, you’re 29 times more likely to end up in the hospital if you’re unvaccinated. Boosters will extend that life-saving protection."

Read more here.

David Brown Says COVID is ‘No Different Than the Gunfire' CPD Officers Face in Line of Duty

Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown defended the city’s vaccine mandate on Tuesday, saying that COVID-19 is “no different than the gunfire” officers face in the line of duty and that refusing the COVID vaccine goes “against the oath” officers take to protect the public.

Brown made the comments during a press conference Tuesday where he revealed that 21 Chicago police officers are currently on no-pay status for refusing to input their information into the city’s vaccine status portal, a move the superintendent says is a violation of direct orders.

Read more here.

Chicago Police Supt. David Brown says that 21 officers have been placed on no-pay status as a result of failure to put their information into the city’s vaccination portal, a decision he feels is necessary to help ensure the safety of both officers and of the public amid the COVID pandemic. NBC 5’s Mary Ann Ahern has the story.

COVID by the Numbers: Coronavirus Metrics in Each of Illinois' 11 Health Care Regions

While positivity rates have largely flatlined throughout the state of Illinois, albeit at higher numbers than had been experienced during the early part of the summer, hospitalizations continue to decline, and ICU availability continues to increase, throughout the state.

According to the latest metrics from the Illinois Department of Public Health, there are currently 1,419 patients hospitalized because of COVID in the state. That is the lowest number the state has recorded since early August, when a surge in cases caused by the delta COVID variant was in full swing.

Of those patients, 327 are currently in intensive care unit beds, reflecting a steady decline in those metrics. More than 550 patients were in ICU beds during the height of the delta-driven surge, and the current number of patients is the lowest the state has seen since mid-August.

Here are the region-by-region metrics in each of Illinois’ 11 health care regions.

10 Myths About COVID-19 Vaccine For Kids, Busted By Chicago Pediatricians

The FDA is planning to meet soon to discuss the next eligible age group, children ages 5-11, for the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine, and pediatricians are preparing to administer the shots, once the vaccine is approved.

Doctors at Advocate Children’s Hospital have been talking with families and parents, listening to their questions and concerns. Misinformation about the vaccine is a big concern for Advocate doctors, who composed a list of the top myths they’re hearing.

Read the top 10 myths here.

Gov. Pritzker Hopes Mask Mandates Can Be Lifted for Holidays, But Urges Caution

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said he's hopeful mask mandates will be lifted in time for the upcoming holidays, but urged caution as he said the state will rely on data for making that decision.

Speaking to reporters after delivering a COVID-19 update Tuesday encouraging booster shots for eligible Illinoisans, Pritzker said state health officials are "continuing again to watch the numbers" daily to "determine when the right time is," though he noted that the time is not now.

Read more here.

3 Locations Removed From Chicago's Travel Advisory This Week

Three locations were removed from Chicago's travel advisory this week, dropping the list of places on the city's warning list to 45 states and two territories.

The city's health department announced Tuesday that Florida, Hawaii and the District of Columbia dropped off the advisory and four other states could soon be removed.

Currently, every state or territory except for California, Connecticut, D.C., Florida, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico are on the advisory.  

Read more here.

Should You Mix and Match COVID Booster Shots? Here's What You Should Know

Federal regulators are expected to authorize the mixing and matching of COVID-19 booster shots this week, but who should do it and when?

Mixing and matching refers to giving a booster dose of a vaccine that's different from the vaccine type that was used for the initial vaccination series.

Here's what we know so far.