Plenty of changes are expected as Illinois enters phase four of its reopening plan at the end of the week, but what about the next and final phase?
The answer is, the state could remain in phase four for some time.
Under Illinois' reopening plan, the only way phase five will begin is with a vaccine, a widely available and highly effective treatment, or with the elimination of any new cases over a sustained period.
"When can everything go back to what it was like in January or December or October, November, October? The answer is that, you know, that's an answer that scientists would tell you, and that I'm listening to, which is it takes it either a very effective... what you're referring to is a therapeutic treatment that will keep people out of the hospital and make it more like just having the flu at home, or a vaccine and I think we're all desperately watching, hoping, praying that there will be something developed in the near future," Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said. "But you know, you talk about phase five, you could call it whatever you like, this is just a question about whether or not you know, can we get back to what we all knew as normal, you know, before this year, and I think the answer is what I just said. Call it what you like - phase five or back to normalcy - but that's what it would be."
Not until phase five will conventions, festivals and large events be permitted, and all businesses, schools, and places of recreation reopen.
The state is set to enter phase four Friday, easing restrictions and allowing larger gatherings to take place. The transition will bring back several businesses and attractions to the city.
Here's a look at what will open for the first time at the beginning of phase four in Chicago:
- Indoor seating in bars and restaurants
- Museums and zoos
- Performance venues
- Summer camps / youth activities
- Gatherings of up to 50 people allowed indoors and up to 100 outdoors
Phase four will also include adjustments to other industries that have previously reopened, but residents will still be urged to social distance and wear face coverings.
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