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COVID-19 cases have risen nearly 10% in Illinois over the past seven days. The state’s new daily case average is around 1,272, according to the data from the Illinois Department of Public Health. These numbers represent probable and confirmed cases.
Over a week ago the daily cases were averaging 1,157. On April 4, 2022, Illinois officials` announced it had received reports of 756 new COVID cases. This brings the total cases to a little over 3.07 million since the beginning of the pandemic.
On February 22, Dr. Allison Arwady tweeted, “Since COVID arrived in Chicago, we’ve been guided by data when making decisions about steps to protect people and keep from overwhelming our healthcare system. Relaxing these mitigations doesn’t mean COVID is gone, it means transmission are lower than they’ve been during surges.”
She was concerned that people would mistake the state’s mask and vaccine removal for COVID finally coming to an end. All it means is that coronavirus cases have declined, making it safer to remove restrictions.
On April 5, Arwady and Chicago Public Schools CEO Pedro Martinez answered citizens’ questions about coronavirus. They began with a look at Chicago’s COVID data dashboard.
Cases in Chicago are currently averaging 284 daily. This is a 33% jump from last week’s 214. The hospitalization daily average has dropped from 11 to 8 — a 30% decrease. The current daily average of vaccinations administered is 2,387. The city’s daily positivity rate is 1.6%.
The coronavirus dashboard shows that 82.4% of Chicagoans 5 years or older have received at least one dose of the vaccine. Those 12 or older are at 85.1%. Individuals 18 or older in the city are at 85.4% with people 65 or older standing at 81.7%.
The percentage of those who have completed the vaccine series are:
- Five and older at 73.05%.
- Twelve and older at 75.6%.
- Eighteen and older at 76.0%.
- Sixty-five and older at 74.9%.
If the first vaccine doses were broken down by Race-Ethnicity:
- The Asian community stands at 85% and 76% have completed the series.
- The Black community is at 61.8% and 54.8% have completed the series.
- The Latino community stands at 75.9% and 67.0% have completed the series.
- The white community is at 75.7% and 69.3% have completed the series.
ASK DR. ARWADY: Have questions about #coronavirus? @DrArwady from the Chicago Department of Public Health is answering your questions live right now. #AskDrArwady #ProtectChicago https://t.co/PXdcjyM2dW
— CDPH | Chicago Department of Public Health (@ChiPublicHealth) April 5, 2022
Dr. Arwady shared this data with viewers. “As you can see nothing alarming at this point,” she stated as she shared her screen. She continued to explain what people were seeing on the screen as she reminded them that the BA.2 variant is still showing up and people could see an increase in COVID cases.
“It is important for people to stay up to date. That means getting a booster. And then as we discussed last week, those over 50 [or] those with immunocompromised conditions can also consider getting the second booster,” stated Dr. Arwady. She added that the most important thing was for people to receive the first and second doses of the COVID vaccine as well as the booster.
Dr. Arwady highlighted that the number of individuals receiving their first dose has picked up daily. “Right now while COVID remains in reasonably good control is the perfect time to get up to date if you haven’t,” she said.
People 12 years and older should go in for their first booster shot:
- Two months after their initial J&J (18+) vaccination.
- Five months after they have received their initial Pfizer (12+) or Moderna (18+) series.
Individuals who are eligible for their second booster dose can do so four months after their first.
Anyone who contracts the virus — regardless of their vaccination status — needs to stay home for five days. If symptoms are resolved or gone after those five days, it is okay to leave quarantine. However, a mask must be still worn while around other people for the next five days.
Martinez shared graphs for CPS’s total reported case count. As of April 2, they had 295 students and 119 staff members contract COVID-19. They are seeing more students and staff work from home at this time — 789 pupils and 150 workers — he added.
“As cases are rising in the city, we see more cases in CPS,” Martinez added. “Even though we are mask optional; we’re always encouraging masks in every school.”
They are still conducting robust COVID testing in the schools. Currently, they have 90,694 students and 32,480 staff registered for testing.
Even though the cases are lower than they have been, it is safer to continue to use caution. It is advised to use social distancing and face masks when in a group setting.
Written by Sheena Robertson
Chicago: COVID Dashboard
NBC Chicago: Illinois COVID Cases Have Increased Nearly 10% in Last Week While Testing Has Declined
First Inline Image Courtesy of Jernej Furman’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Second Inline Image Courtesy of Tony Alter’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Top and Featured Image Courtesy of Joseph Gage’s Flickr – Creative Commons License