coronavirus illinois

Illinois Coronavirus Updates: Medications With the Vaccine, Chicago ‘Vaccine Bus'

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Whether preparing for the COVID-19 vaccine or enduring side effects, officials provided guidance on taking various over-the-counter medications.

Meanwhile, Chicago public health officials launched a new mobile COVID-19 vaccination program using a CTA bus to reach seniors in areas with low vaccination rates.

Here are the latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic across Illinois today:

Illinois COVID: 2,839 New COVID Cases, 13 Deaths, 145K Vaccinations

Health officials in Illinois on Saturday reported more than 2,839 new coronavirus cases and 13 additional deaths, along with more than 145,000 vaccinations in the past 24 hours.

According to figures from the Illinois Department of Public Health, the 2,839 new confirmed and probable COVID cases reported in the last day brought the state’s total to 1,254,185 cases since the pandemic began last year.

According to health officials, the seven-day positivity rate on all tests currently stands at 3.8% while the positivity rate for individuals tested stands at 4.3%.

A total of 145,315 doses of COVID-19 vaccines were administered in the past 24 hours, IDPH said. The latest figures brought the rolling seven-day average for daily vaccinations to 110,057.

Read more here.

Can You Take Tylenol, Ibuprofen With the COVID Vaccine?

Whether preparing for the COVID-19 vaccine or enduring side effects, officials provided guidance on taking various over-the-counter medications.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends people talk to their doctors about taking over-the-counter medicines like ibuprofen, acetaminophen, aspirin, or antihistamines, for any pain and discomfort after getting vaccinated. 

The CDC does not recommend, however, that people take such over-the-counter medications or antihistamines to prevent side effects prior to receiving the coronavirus vaccine.

"You can take these medications to relieve post-vaccination side effects if you have no other medical reasons that prevent you from taking these medications normally," the CDC states. "It is not recommended you take these medicines before vaccination for the purpose of trying to prevent side effects."

Read more here.

Chicago Launches CTA Bus Offering Mobile COVID Vaccinations

Chicago public health officials launched a new mobile COVID-19 vaccination program Wednesday using a CTA bus to reach seniors in areas with low vaccination rates.

 The “Protect Chicago” vaccination bus made its first stop at Atlas Senior Center, 1767 E. 79th St., and inoculated 98 residents, according to a statement from the city.

The city is currently planning future events and locations for the vaccination bus in coordination with community organizations, aldermen and other stakeholders.

Appointments for the bus will be strongly encouraged but not required, officials said, noting that once future events are determined, eligible individuals will be given a special registration link and code.

Read more here.

Where Chicago Plans to Use Johnson & Johnson COVID Vaccine Doses

Chicago is projected to receive roughly 40,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine this week, the city's top doctor said Thursday, detailing locations where those single-shot doses are going to be used.

"We've got big plans for that Johnson & Johnson," Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady said during a Facebook Live broadcast Thursday morning. "We're using it to expand the homebound program, we're using it to bring to more manufacturing settings, we're using it to vaccinate everybody who works at O'Hare."

"We're using it to vaccinate some of the union workers that we're very focused on," she continued, seemingly in reference to the mass vaccination site for union workers that the city announced earlier this week, billing it as a "first-of-its-kind effort" in partnership with the Chicago Federation of Labor.

"We've got plans to be vaccinating restaurant and food service workers in dedicated events and we wanted to get it to providers," Arwady said. She later noted that the city has more than 600 providers enrolled to administer vaccinations, but can only give about a third of them vaccine doses each week.

Read more here.

1 in 3 of Chicago's COVID Vaccine Doses Going to Non-Residents

Chicago health officials say that one out of every three coronavirus vaccine doses sent to the city are being administered to non-city residents, and are calling on the state of Illinois to step up deliveries of doses to help accelerate vaccination efforts.

During a Facebook Live on Thursday, Dr. Allison Arwady, commissioner of the Chicago Department of Public Health, called on the state to push more vaccine doses to the northeast corner of the state, citing instances where other areas of the state are seeing surpluses of the vaccine.

“We’ve been in a lot of conversations with the state to please work on pushing additional vaccine up to the northeast, which is the most heavily populated area,” she said. “I’m really pleased there are parts of the state that there’s plenty of vaccine available, but the goal then should be to push additional doses up here because it’s not just Chicago where we see such high demand, but across Cook and Lake counties as well.”

Read more here.

Why You May Be More Likely to Get the Moderna Vaccine in Chicago

As three different COVID-19 vaccines become available across the country, Moderna remains the front runner for distribution in Chicago and across Illinois, according to Chicago’s top doctor.

Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady said the Moderna vaccine is being used more because it’s less complicated to handle and store unlike the Pfizer vaccine.

“Pfizer remains a little bit complicated in terms of it's got this ultra-cold vaccination storage and you only have five days to use it from when you pull it out,” Arwady said during a Facebook Live Q&A on Thursday.

Read more here.

COVID Vaccine Side Effects: Why Do Some Get Them and What Does it Mean?

Side effects are possible after receiving either one or two doses of any of the three coronavirus vaccines currently being administered in the U.S., but not everyone experiences them.

So what causes the side effects and what does it mean if you get them when others don't?

Here's what you should know.

Kendall County COVID Vaccine Eligibility Expands to Anyone Who Lives or Works in County

The Kendall County Health Department on Thursday announced that anyone who lives or works in the county will now be eligible for the coronavirus vaccine.

"The Health Department is excited to announce that we are opening our clinic to anyone that lives or works in Kendall County," the health department wrote on Facebook. "We are no longer following a 'phased' approach."

Details here.

Lake County Opens New Mass Vaccination Site in Waukegan Thursday

Lake County opened its new mass vaccination site Thursday in Waukegan, one of several new sites launching in Chicago suburbs this week.

The site is located at the community based testing center at 102 W. Water Street and all eligible Illinois residents can book appointments, regardless of where they live. Details here.

Can You Drink After Getting the COVID Vaccine? Illinois Doctor Weighs In

Can you drink alcohol after getting the coronavirus vaccine? It's a question some have been asking as eligibility in Illinois continues to expand and more people prepare for their first or second dose.

The answer, according to an Illinois doctor with Cook County Health, is yes, but there's a catch.

 "It's a great question. The simple, short answer is yes," Dr. Mark Loafman, chair of family and community medicine for Cook County Health, told NBC Chicago. "There's no prohibition against drinking alcohol. It wasn't specifically studied and there's an assumption that some, you know, an average number of people in the study did use alcohol during the study, but it wasn't specifically measured."

"Excessive" alcohol consumption, however, can lead to a weakened immune system, Loafman said.

Read more here.

Getting Your Second Dose of the COVID Vaccine? Here's What You Should Know

If you're awaiting your second shot of the coronavirus vaccine, chances are you've got some questions.

What are the side effects and when are you likely going to experience them? How long do you have to wait until you are fully vaccinated?

Here's a look at what you should know.

2 Mass Vaccination Sites to Open in Chicago Next Week, Including 1 Near Wrigley Field

Two new mass vaccination sites - one at Chicago State University and a second just outside Wrigley Field - are set to open in Chicago next week, officials announced Tuesday.

Beginning April 5, Chicago residents eligible under Phase 1C of the city's COVID vaccine rollout will be able to get a vaccine from Chicago State University or the American Airlines Conference Center at Gallagher Way next to Wrigley Field.

Appointments for the new sites are expected to be released "later this week" on the city's Zocdoc scheduling platform, with additional appointments expected to post each day.

Details here.

Illinois Vaccinations

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.


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