Illinois has reached three major milestones in coronavirus testing, Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced Monday.
On Saturday, state health officials reported 74,286 tests conducted in the previous 24 hours - marking a new one-day high in the state, Pritzker said during a news conference.
That figure brought the total number of tests conducted in Illinois to more than 5 million since the pandemic began - exactly 5,057,142 on Saturday, reaching 5,143,387 by Monday afternoon. That makes Illinois one of the first states in the U.S. to cross that 5 million mark, he added.
"These nation-leading accomplishments have allowed Illinoisans to do what most states can't. There's a testing location and testing available for you if you feel you need one and you can get one even without a doctor's order," he said. "For families, businesses, schools and churches, that means there's a measure of safety here in Illinois that doesn't exist in most other states."
The third milestone Pritzker noted Monday was that the state is averaging about 52,000 tests conducted each day, putting Illinois tied for third in the country after California and New York.
Pritzker said that the robust testing program in Illinois made it "by far the best testing state in the Midwest," saying Illinois has conducted 50% more coronavirus tests than the state ranked second in the region.
"We do three and a half times the testing that the average state does, and we're one of the fastest states om delivering tests back to our residents. In a pandemic, widely available testing and faster results mean our people are safer," he added.
Illinois health officials on Monday reported 1,477 new cases of coronavirus and seven additional deaths. Those figures brought the statewide totals to 275,735 confirmed cases, including 8,457 deaths, since the pandemic began.
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