Illinois health officials reported 17,584 new COVID-19 cases over the past week, along with 74 additional deaths, marking a decrease in cases from a week prior, as 20 counties within the state remain at a “high” community level for COVID-19.
The previous week, Illinois reported 19,933 new cases and 64 deaths. The week before that, 26,127 new cases and 70 deaths were reported.
The latest numbers come as reformulated vaccines that target the latest omicron subvariants, BA.4 and BA.5, began across the state.
“It is very encouraging to see Illinois residents turning out in such strong numbers to take advantage of the updated bivalent booster shots that are now available,” Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Sameer Vohra said. “These new booster shots — designed specifically to offer extra protection from the dominant Omicron strain of the virus — are the latest, most advanced tool to protect Illinois residents from experiencing the worst effects of COVID-19. It’s important for everyone who is eligible to get up to date on vaccines and boosters as soon as possible, before a potential fall and winter surge leads to increased infections.”
In all, 3,733,902 cases of coronavirus have occurred in the state since the pandemic began, according to the latest data from the Illinois Department of Public Health. The additional deaths bring Illinois to 34,885 confirmed COVID fatalities.
According to IDPH, the preliminary seven-day statewide case rate is 138 COVID cases per 100,000 Illinois residents, a drop from the 156 cases per 100,000 residents reported a week prior.
As of midnight Thursday, 1,153 patients were hospitalized due to COVID in the state, down from last week’s 1,314 patients. Of the current patients, 145 are in ICU beds, and 49 are on ventilators.
Over the past seven days, the state’s weekly vaccination average rose to 27,025 doses from 5,825 the previous week, per IDPH data.
More than 23 million vaccine doses have been given in Illinois since vaccinations began in December 2020. More than 69% of Illinois residents are fully vaccinated against COVID, with more than 77% receiving at least one dose. About 54% are also boosted.
As of Friday, the following Illinois counties were at “high” community level were: Champaign, Clay, Coles, DeKalb, Douglas, Edgar, Fayette, Ford, Franklin, Fulton, Henderson, Jackson, Johnson, Perry, Richland, Scott, Stephenson, Vermilion, Wabash and Williamson.
At the “high” level, the CDC recommends that all people in the area wear a mask indoors regardless of vaccination status. For those who are immunocompromised, the CDC suggests avoiding “non-essential indoor activities” in public places.
According to CDC data, an additional 46 counties in Illinois are now rated at the “medium” community level.
In the counties at “medium” risk level, the CDC recommends the elderly and immunocompromised wear a mask in indoor public places and receive COVID vaccinations and booster shots, if eligible.