Chicago opens COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to all residents age 16 and older Monday.
Meanwhile, Chicago’s public high schools are set to reopen for the first time since the district went fully remote over a year ago.
Here are the latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic across Illinois today:
Chicago COVID Vaccine Eligibility Opens to All Residents Ages 16 and Up Monday
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Chicago opens COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to all residents age 16 and older Monday, one week after the rest of Illinois.
The shift to Phase 2 eligibility comes as the city announces that more than 1 million residents have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine.
“Opening vaccine eligibility to all adults in Chicago is another important milestone in our goal of vaccinating everyone, and moving past the pandemic to reopen our city safely,” Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said.
Lightfoot also issued a reminder that vaccine supply continues to remain limited throughout the city, encouraging people to remain patient.
Read more here.
Chicago High Schools to Reopen Monday After Union Approval
Chicago’s public high schools are set to reopen Monday for the first time since the nation’s third-largest school district went fully remote amid the coronavirus pandemic over a year ago.
The Chicago Teachers Union announced Sunday that its members overwhelmingly approved a reopening plan that includes helping students 16 and older and their families get COVID-19 vaccines, with priority given to certain ZIP codes hit hard by the pandemic. Also included in the agreement with Chicago Public Schools is more leeway for educators to work remotely, like if they don’t have in-person students that day.
Illinois Administers Over 8M COVID Vaccines, Crossing Major Milestone
Illinois health officials crossed a major milestone Sunday in the fight against COVID-19.
The state has administered over 8 million doses of coronavirus vaccine during the pandemic, while receiving 9,930,945 doses, as of Sunday.
Health officials reported 115,330 vaccinations administered statewide in the last day, according to the latest data. Saturday's vaccinations brought the seven-day rolling average of vaccines administered to 125,146 doses.
Read more here.
Coronavirus in Illinois: 2,666 New COVID Cases, 10 Deaths, 115K Vaccinations
Illinois health officials reported 2,666 new confirmed and probable coronavirus cases and 10 additional deaths in the last day, along with over 115,000 vaccinations administered.
The newly reported coronavirus cases Sunday brings the state total to 1,302,241 cases since the pandemic began. The 10 additional deaths rose the total death toll to 21,663, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.
In the last 24 hours, 70,106 coronavirus test specimens were returned to state laboratories, with more than 21.7 million now conducted during the pandemic.
The statewide positivity dropped Sunday, with 4% of all tests returning positive results. The positivity rate for individuals tested in the last seven days also dropped to 4.7%, according to IDPH data.
Read more here.
These Are the College Vaccination Days Coming to Illinois
Illinois officials announced Friday new "college vaccination days" to encourage students at universities across the state to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
With several events happening this week, the Illinois Department of Public Health is partnering with various colleges to bring the vaccine directly to students.
The mass vaccination sites will have appointments available specifically for college and university students, according to a release. Students should be provided a link to register for an appointment.
For a full list of locations, click here.
Chicago Revamps COVID Vaccination Rollout After Pausing Use of Johnson & Johnson Vaccine
Chicago officials announced updated plans for the city's COVID-19 vaccination rollout after pausing the use of Johnson & Johnson vaccines following federal recommendations.
Chicago ordered a temporarily halt of the single-dose vaccine based on guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as they investigate reports of potentially dangerous blood clots.
Here are the latest updates to the city's vaccination plan:
- The Chicago State University mass vaccination site switched to Pfizer vaccine beginning Wednesday
- The Protect Chicago Homebound program will switch to Pfizer vaccine with appointments resuming Friday
- Events scheduled with Walgreens as part of the Faith Month initiative this weekend will use the Pfizer vaccine
- Chicago Federation of Labor vaccination site will switch to Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, but limited to 1,200 doses per week. Appointments resume on Monday
- Events with the Illinois Restaurant Association are on hold until the week of April 26
- The O'Hare vaccination site previously using the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will close. Anyone with a scheduled appointment will be invited to receive a vaccination at Wright College or the United Center
- The Chicago Department of Public Health-Chicago Transit Authority vaccination bus remains on pause
- All other vaccination locations in Chicago using Pfizer or Moderna vaccine will operate as normal
Read more here.
Chicago to Host Vaccination Clinic at Loretto Hospital After Pausing Doses During Controversy
Weeks after Chicago first cut off vaccine supply to the West Side's Loretto Hospital, the city has announced a new vaccination event at the facility for area residents.
The Chicago Department of Public Health said it will open a city-managed vaccination clinic at Loretto Hospital beginning April 21 for residents of the Austin neighborhood.
"Located onsite at the hospital, the new clinic will increase vaccine access on the West Side while ensuring all vaccination guidelines are stringently followed," the department said in a release.
Previously, the city paused vaccine shipments to the facility after reports surfaced that the hospital hosted a series of COVID vaccination events involving alleged favoritism, including one in which ineligible Trump Tower workers were vaccinated.
Read more here.
Are COVID Vaccines FDA Approved? Here's How the Process Works
News that Moderna was inching closer to requesting full approval of its COVID vaccine by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has led to some questions surrounding the approval process for the coronavirus vaccines this week.
Currently, no coronavirus vaccine is fully approved by the FDA, but three were given emergency use authorization by the agency.
They include vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson, the last of which regulators recommended be paused Tuesday while they investigate reports of potentially dangerous blood clots in a small number of women.
Emergency use authorization allows a vaccine to become available prior to full approval in the case of public health emergencies. The FDA can revoke the EUA at any time.
Read more here.
Note: For COVID-19, the herd-immunity threshold is estimated to be between 60 and 90 percent. Our analysis considers herd immunity reached at 75% of the population fully vaccinated based on estimates by Dr. Anthony Fauci.
Which COVID Vaccine is Best For You and How Long Do They Last?
As new studies surrounding COVID vaccine efficacy and how long both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines last continue to emerge, how can you know which is best for you? According to medical experts, the vaccines currently available in the U.S. each offer some level of protection.
For a breakdown, click here.
What Makes You More Likely to Get Side Effects From COVID Vaccine?
Side effects are possible after receiving either one or two doses of any of the coronavirus vaccines currently being administered in the U.S., but not everyone experiences them. Experiencing side effects isn't necessarily a bad thing. In fact, it's a sign your body is responding.
So what makes someone more likely to experience them than others?
Women and younger people are more likely to report side effects, experts say, while side effects could also vary depending on whether or not you've had coronavirus.
People are more likely to report side effects after their second dose, Chicago's top doctor said, echoing reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But not getting side effects isn't negative, health experts say.