Illinois Coronavirus Updates: State Hits 20,000 COVID-19 Cases, Now Testing More Individuals Than Ever
Although the state of Illinois saw 1,672 new cases of coronavirus on Sunday, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker continued to express cautious optimism that the state could be flattening the curve and helping slow the spread of the virus.
The state is also ramping up testing efforts, with nearly 8,000 tests conducted in a 24-hour span.
In Chicago, residents who live near a now-defunct power plant are asking questions about why city officials allowed a smoke stack to be demolished nearby, releasing a large dust cloud into the air and coating homes, cars and property with dust.
Here are the latest developments in the coronavirus crisis in the state of Illinois:
Nearly 1,700 New Cases of Coronavirus Reported Sunday
The state of Illinois hit another milestone on Sunday, as more than 20,000 residents statewide have now tested positive for coronavirus.
Illinois reported its single largest day jump in cases since the pandemic began, with 1,672 new cases, but also reported 43 additional deaths as a result of the virus, the lowest jump in that number over the last six days, according to the governor.
A total of 720 individuals have now passed away after contracting the virus.
Pritzker Says Curve May be Flattening Even With More Cases Being Reported
Even with more cases than ever reported by the state, Governor Pritzker says data continues to indicate that “stay-at-home” orders and social distancing are having an effect in slowing the spread of the virus.
Over the last 24 hours, the state of Illinois reported 43 deaths, its lowest uptick in that number in nearly a week, while also testing nearly 8,000 state residents, the highest number of tests performed thus far during the pandemic.
With more testing capability going online and the rate of spread of the disease slowing, Pritzker and other officials are hopeful that the state is beginning to “flatten the curve” and move toward a peak in cases.
Residents Cope With COVID-19 Concerns After Dust Cloud Envelops Neighborhood
Saying residents’ fears about COVID-19 have “only been exacerbated” by the situation, Chicago Alderman Michael Rodriguez and other officials are working quickly to help residents impacted by a cloud of dust that was kicked up by the implosion of a smoke stack in Little Village on Saturday.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot has halted work at the site, a former power plant that is being redeveloped, and is demanding that the company responsible for the demolition project help clean up the mess caused by a cloud of dust that coated properties, homes and cars in the neighborhood.
The city of Chicago will also distribute masks to individuals impacted, and air quality tests are being conducted by the Chicago Department of Public Health.
The dust itself is being tested for any potentially harmful substances, but officials say the company worked to safely remove any toxic materials from the site, including asbestos.
“I would not have major concern at this point, based on what we know, but investigations are ongoing,” Dr. Allison Arwady said. “I would encourage residents of Little Village to pay attention, especially if they have underlying conditions, if they aren’t feeling well.”