coronavirus

14 New Cases of Coronavirus Confirmed in Illinois, Bringing the Total to 46

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An additional 14 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Illinois, health officials said Friday, bringing the state's total to 46.

The update came during the state's daily coronavirus press briefing with Gov. J.B. Pritzker as well as other state officials.

Nine of the new cases were reported in Chicago while an additional four cases were confirmed in suburban Cook County, according to the llinois Department of Public Health. The 14th confirmed case was in Lake County.

The ages of the additional coronavirus patients range from the 20s to the 90s.

Approximately 30% of the cases in Illinois are travel-associated while about 41% are a "contact" of a separate coronavirus case, according to IDPH. The remaining cases do not have a clear connection and could be the result of spread in the community.

Also on Friday, Gov. Pritzker announced all schools in Illinois, including Chicago Public Schools, will be closed until the end of March, as the number of cases continues to rise.

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The Archdiocese of Chicago also suspended all public church services and celebrations of Mass "in order to slow the spread” of the coronavirus pandemic.

Earlier in the week, Chicago and state officials announced the city's St. Patrick's Day parades and iconic river dyeing have been postponed amid coronavirus concerns.

The postponement of the festivities come as several other major events around the city and U.S. were canceled or postponed.

Major League Baseball announced Thursday it canceled the rest of its spring training game schedule and delayed the start of the season by at least two weeks. The National Hockey League also said it is pausing its season, following the NBA in doing the same. The NCAA also announced the cancellation of the Division I men’s and women’s 2020 basketball tournaments.

Many passengers say they aren't worried, despite a State Department warning against cruise ship travel during the coronavirus outbreak.

For a list of Chicago-area event cancellations, click here.

State officials have been urging people, particularly elderly residents, to avoid mass gatherings in the area.

Pritzker, who on Monday declared a disaster proclamation in the state, said he has demanded the state receiving more testing kits as soon as possible.

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