The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) announced this week that the CDC is reporting 59 counties in the state are at an elevated level for COVID-19, compared to 73 in the previous week. Of those, three Illinois counties are at a High Community Level, compared to 28 the previous week; and 56 counties are at Medium Level, compared to 45 the previous week. IDPH is reporting 16,602 new confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 in Illinois in the week ending January 8, and 113 deaths. [Read more...]
IDPH Reports 86 Illinois Counties are at an Elevated Community Level for COVID-19
Bivalent Booster Vaccine Now Authorized for Children 6 Months and Older; Illinoisans urged to Get Fully Vaccinated for COVID-19 & Flu & Stay Home and Seek Treatment Immediately if Sick; 23,334 New COVID-19 Cases in Last Week
With the holiday season underway and COVID-19 and other respiratory viruses continuing to rise across the state, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is urging Illinoisans to take action to protect themselves and their loved ones during the festive season. IDPH Director Dr. Sameer Vohra is reminding the public that basic health precautions are especially important when it comes to protecting members of the family who are most vulnerable to severe outcome, including older family members and the very young. Dr. Vohra strongly urges parents to take advantage of the newly authorized bivalent boosters for children six months and older. [Read more...]
Governor Pritzker Adjusts COVID-19 Requirements to Address Current Needs
Testing Requirements Eased for Certain School and Childcare Staff with New Executive Order
As part of his continuing plan to carefully unwind the state’s COVID-19 executive orders, Governor Pritzker last week updated testing requirements for school and childcare personnel, rescinding the requirement that unvaccinated employees in these sectors test twice weekly. This change goes into effect Friday and is made on the advice of medical experts, based on their careful consideration of the current conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic and is in line with Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidance.
“Vaccination continues to be the most effective tool we have against COVID-19, and I’m proud that millions of Illinoisans have taken advantage of these life-saving vaccines – they have given us the ability to adjust these requirements,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “I continue to urge everyone in the state to stay up to date on vaccines and boosters, including getting the recently released bivalent booster shot. Although the current state of the pandemic is very different than it was two years ago, we still need to protect the most vulnerable members of our community as we continue to be responsive to the changing challenges and evolutions of this virus.” [Read more...]
State of Illinois Adopts New CDC COVID-19 Guidelines For K-12 Schools and Early Education
With Widespread Vaccine Availability and Effective Treatments, New Guidance Eases Requirements For Exposure Quarantines in Low and Moderate Risk Setting
CDC Also Stresses Importance of Staying Up to Date on Vaccinations and Boosters [Read more...]
Gov. Pritzker Tests Positive For COVID-19
After being notified of several close contacts testing positive for COVID-19, Gov. Pritzker received a positive test result during his routine COVID testing regimen. The Governor is experiencing mild symptoms and has been prescribed the anti-viral medication, Paxlovid. [Read more...]
CDC Reports that 15 Illinois Counties are now Rated at High Community Level for COVID-19 Including Chicago Metro Area
Public Health Officials Stress Importance of Being Updated on Vaccinations and Boosters; Vulnerable People Should Exercise Caution in Indoor Spaces
The CDC reported late today that 15 Illinois counties are now rated at High Community Level for COVID-19, an area that includes Chicago, Cook County and surrounding counties in northeastern Illinois as well as counties around Peoria. An additional 30 counties in Illinois are now rated at Medium Community Level, according to the CDC.
The counties listed at High Community Level are Cook, DuPage, Lake, McHenry, Will, Grundy, Boone, Lee and Winnebago in Northern Illinois and Fulton, Knox, Henderson, Mason, Peoria and Tazewell in Central Illinois. [Read more...]
Changeover from COVID-19 Individual Contact Tracing Calls to “Automated Case Notification” Begins June 1
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) today announced it is shifting its COVID-19 contact tracing efforts and individual case investigation telephone calls to focus on a more strategic approach of automated case notifications.
Starting June 1, 2022, IDPH will no longer make individual case investigation calls to persons positive with COVID-19, and instead those individuals will receive an automated message. IDPH notifications to COVID-19 cases had previously included a call back option from contact tracers and individual case investigations of persons 65 years of age and older. [Read more...]
IDPH Endorses Federal Authorization of COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Dose for Children 5 through 11 Years
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) announced last week that it supports the recommendation by the CDC of the Pfizer-BioNTechCOVID-19 booster dose for children aged 5 to 11 years old. IDPH issued an advisory to vaccine providers throughout the state endorsing the booster for children 5 through 11 years of age at least five months after completion of a primary series with the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, following the emergency use authorization this week by the FDA and the recommendation of the CDC. [Read more...]