SPRINGFIELD (WGEM) – The CDC reported Friday that 59 counties are now listed at the high community level for COVID-19 and 34 counties are rated at the medium community level.
The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 30,762 new confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases this week. The state also reported another 59 deaths during that time. 34,416 Illinoisans have died from COVID-related illness since the pandemic started.
IDPH continues to urge people to get up-to-date on vaccines and booster shots in order to stay healthy. IDPH Director Sameer Vohra is specifically urging parents and guardians to get young children vaccinated. COVID-19 vaccines for children under 5 were recommended by the CDC on June 18.
1,413 people are currently hospitalized for COVID-19 in Illinois. 140 people are in the ICU and 51 of those patients are on ventilators.
Counties listed at the high community level include Boone, Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, Lee, McHenry, Ogle, Stephenson, Whiteside, Will, and Winnebago in northern Illinois. Adams, Brown, Cass, Champaign, Christian, Clark, Coles, Cumberland, Effingham, Fayette, Ford, Fulton, Henderson, Knox, Logan, Marshall, Mason, McDonough, Menard, Pike, Sangamon, Schuyler, and Warren counties in Central Illinois are also at the high community level. Alexander, Bond, Calhoun, Crawford, Franklin, Gallatin, Hardin, Jackson, Jersey, Johnson, Lawrence, Madison, Marion, Massac, Perry, Pope, Pulaski, Saline, Union, Wabash, and Williamson counties across Southern Illinois met the high-risk mark as well.
The CDC recommends people in areas rated at the high community level should wear well-fitted masks indoors in public, regardless of vaccination status. The organization notes that the recommendation includes masking in K-12 schools and other indoor community settings. People who are immunocompromised or at high risk for severe disease should wear a mask or respirator for greater protection and consider avoiding non-essential indoor activities in public. The CDC said those people should also have a plan for at-home testing and talk with a healthcare provider if they test positive to learn about oral antivirals and monoclonal antibodies.
Anyone in close contact with someone at high risk for severe disease is advised to consider self-testing to detect COVID-19 infection before contact. The CDC also said those people should wear a mask whenever they are inside with someone at higher risk for disease.
Elderly or immunocompromised people living in areas labeled at medium-level risk for COVID-19 should wear masks in indoor places as well. The CDC said those individuals should be up-to-date on COVID-19 vaccines and get a second booster shot if eligible.
IDPH reported 6,257 new confirmed and probable cases and 4 deaths on Friday. The case rate 7-day average is now 241 per 100,000 people.
11,055 vaccines were given over the last 24 hours. 85% of Illinoisans 12 and older have received at least one shot. 77% of those people are fully vaccinated. The 7-day rolling average for shots given is 9,626.
IDPH is still working with the Illinois Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics to educate health providers and parents about COVID-19 vaccines for younger children. They hope more people will decide to get their children vaccinated after learning about the effectiveness and safety of the authorized vaccines for youth under 5.
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