For the fourth time in eight days, the state of Illinois set another new single-day record for COVID cases, with more than 44,000 residents testing positive for the virus over the last 24 hours.
According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, the state recorded 44,089 new cases of the virus on Thursday, marking the first time that officials have reported more than 35,000 cases in a single day.
Over the last seven days, the state has averaged 27,141 new COVID cases per day, a 48% increase over the previous week’s averages, according to IDPH data.
In all, the state has recorded 2,339,534 confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began in Feb. 2020.
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Illinois officials reported 104 COVID-related fatalities in the last 24 hours, the highest number the state has seen in a single day since Feb. 11, 2021.
In all, 28,260 Illinois residents have died after contracting COVID-19, with 3,276 more deaths currently classified as “probable” COVID fatalities.
Reversing a recent trend, the state saw a significant uptick in new test results on Thursday, with 247,830 results being returned to state laboratories in the last 24 hours. The state is now averaging 184,120 tests per day, and has performed more than 45.7 million tests during the pandemic.
The positivity rates in Illinois did increase slightly, rising to 14.7% on all tests and to 18.6% on individuals tested, according to IDPH data.
Hospitalizations also set another new high watermark on Thursday, with 7,098 patients with COVID now hospitalized in Illinois. Of those patients, 1,119 are in intensive care units.
Currently, four of the state’s 11 health care regions have single-digit ICU bed availability, including Region 7, comprised of Will and Kankakee counties. There, seven of the 133 staffed ICU beds are currently available.
Things are even worse in downstate Illinois’ Region 5. That area, comprised of 20 counties, currently has just two staffed ICU beds available.
In the last 24 hours, 58,684 doses of COVID vaccine were administered, with the rolling average dropping to 43,690 a day.
In all, early 3.3 million Illinoisans have received booster doses, according to IDPH data. Of the eligible population in the state, 68.6% are fully vaccinated, and 77.3% have received at least one dose.
Since the start of the pandemic, 6,087 fully vaccinated individuals have been hospitalized, representing 0.079% of the total vaccinated population. Of those patients, 1,674 have died, representing 0.022% of the vaccinated population.
According to officials, 71% of those breakthrough hospitalizations occurred in patients with underlying or immunocompromising conditions, with 53% of deaths fitting that criteria.
Approximately 87% of deaths in breakthrough cases occurred in individuals over the age of 65. A total of 220 deaths, or 13% of breakthrough fatalities, occurred in individuals between the ages of 18 and 64.
Zero breakthrough deaths, and just 25 total hospitalizations, have been reported among the children who have been fully vaccinated against COVID.