73 counties in Illinois at Elevated Community Level for COVID-19

county map of COVID-19 levels in Illinois (Source: IDPH)
county map of COVID-19 levels in Illinois (Source: IDPH)

(KBSI) – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports 73 counties in Illinois are at an elevated level for COVID-19.

That is up from 65 in the previous week, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).

Of those 73 counties, 28 Illinois counties are at a High Community Level and 45 counties are at Medium Level.

IDPH reports 16,281 new confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 in Illinois in the week ending January 1, and 20 deaths.

IDPH Director Dr. Sameer Vohra recommends that residents take steps to prevent the spread of infection, protect those most vulnerable to serious illness, and preserve hospital capacity.

“It is not too late to get your COVID-19 bivalent booster or yearly flu shot,” Vohra said. “And if you are sick, please stay home if you are able and reach out to your provider about treatments for COVID-19 and the flu.”

IDPH previously announced that as of the end of 2022, it would follow the lead of the CDC and shift from daily reporting of new COVID-19 cases and deaths to weekly reporting.

IDPH is now reporting weekly data on Wednesday of each week for the previous week ending Sunday. IDPH continues daily reporting of ICU bed availability and hospital admission data.

The CDC announced it was making the shift from daily to weekly reporting of case and death data in October. IDPH officials believe that weekly reporting will provide the public with a more accurate picture of COVID-19 trends across the state over time by tracking cases and deaths by the week they arise, rather than the date they are reported, which may be days or weeks later.

Tap here to find locations to test and find treatment.

Contacting your provider for treatment options within five days of feeling ill, according to IDPH.

Updated boosters are available at pharmacies, hospitals, and other healthcare providers. The best way to locate a vaccine provider near you is to visit vaccines.gov and search for bivalent booster availability.

IDPH reports a total of 3,981,275 cases, including 35,814 deaths, in 102 counties in Illinois since the beginning of the pandemic.

As of the night of Thursday, Jan. 5, 1,766 individuals in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 233 patients were in the ICU and 77 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators. The preliminary seven-day statewide case rate is 128 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 Illinoisans.

The CDC recommends the following measures for people in areas that are rated at High Community Level for COVID-19 transmission:

  • Wear a well-fitting mask indoors in public, regardless of vaccination status (including in K-12 schools and other indoor community settings)
  • If you are immunocompromised or high risk for severe disease
    • Wear a mask or respirator that provides you with greater protection
    • Consider avoiding non-essential indoor activities in public where you could be exposed
    • Talk to your healthcare provider about whether you need to take other precautions
    • Have a plan for rapid testing if needed (e.g., having home tests or access to testing)
    • IF YOU TEST POSITIVE: Talk to your healthcare provider about whether you are a candidate for treatments like oral antivirals, and monoclonal antibodies
  • If you have household or social contact with someone at high risk for severe disease
    • consider self-testing to detect infection before contact
    • consider wearing a mask when indoors with them
  • Stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines and boosters
  • Maintain improved ventilation throughout indoor spaces when possible
  • Follow CDC recommendations for isolation and quarantine, including getting tested if you are exposed to COVID-19 or have symptoms of COVID-19

In counties at the Medium Community Level, thosewho are elderly or immunocompromised (at risk of severe outcomes) are advised to wear a mask in indoor public places. They should also get up to date on COVID-19 vaccines or get their bivalent booster, if eligible.

There are more than 1,200 treatment locations in Illinois – including all the major retail pharmacies. More than 96.7% of the state’s population is within a 10-mile radius of one of these locations.

A total of 25,781,758 vaccines have been administered in Illinois as of Friday, Jan. 6. The seven-day rolling average of vaccines administered daily is 7,838 doses, including the bivalent booster and first doses. More than 2 million people in Illinois have received the new bivalent booster dose since it was authorized. Of Illinois’ total population, more than 78% have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose, 71% have completed their primary series of COVID-19 vaccines, and of the eligible population, more than 18% have received the bivalent booster dose, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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