Illinois health officials again reported more than 12,000 new confirmed and probable coronavirus cases on Wednesday, setting a record for the highest single-day report of new cases for the second consecutive day as the state also marked the deadliest day of the pandemic since May.
The state reported 12,657 new cases and 145 additional deaths Wednesday, according to data from the Illinois Department of Public Health. That marked the second day in a row Illinois has reported a record high one-day case count and the sixth consecutive day in which the state has seen more than 10,000 new coronavirus cases.
Those figures brought the total number of cases in the state to 523,840 since the pandemic began and lifted the death toll to 10,434, IDPH said. The 145 deaths reported Wednesday marked Illinois' highest single-day death toll since May 27, when the state reported 160 deaths.
A total of 93,464 new tests were performed over the last 24 hours, according to state health officials. In all, 8,664,483 tests have been performed during the pandemic.
The state’s seven-day positivity rate continued to climb, reaching 12.4% on Wednesday. That marks a nearly 2-point increase in three days, rising from 12% on Tuesday, which was up from 11.4% on Monday and 10.6% on Sunday.
The state also saw its hospitalization numbers continue to increase on Wednesday, with 5,042 residents currently in hospitals due to coronavirus-like illnesses. Of those patients, 951 are currently in intensive care units, and 404 are on ventilators.
All three statistics are the highest metrics the state has seen in their respective categories since the first peak in COVID-19 cases earlier this year.
State health officials on Wednesday recommended that all residents "stay home as much as possible, leaving only for necessary and essential activities, such as work that must be performed outside the home, COVID-19 testing, visiting the pharmacy, and buying groceries."
IDPH also recommended everyone work with employers to work from home unless necessary to be in the workplace and issued another warning that "attending even small gatherings that mix households or traveling to areas that are experiencing high rates of positivity, is not advised and is potentially dangerous."
Enhanced coronavirus restrictions took effect Wednesday in several Illinois regions as metrics continue to rise.
Regions 5, 7 and 8, which include Will, Kankakee, Kane and DuPage counties in Illinois, as well as the southern part of the state, are set to see the new mitigations limiting group sizes, among other restrictions.
All 11 regions in the state are currently under some form of enhanced mitigations, including the closure of indoor dining and bar service as well as limitations on gathering sizes and more.