Illinois May Get TOUGHER Covid Restrictions, Pritzker Says
Even as covid numbers slowly decline in the state, Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker has said there may be tougher covid restrictions ahead.
At a press conference this week, Pritzker noted that rather than a removal of the mask mandate and a pulling back of mitigations, covid restrictions may remain and be tightened up if numbers begin to rise like they did last fall.
“If you go look at the hospitalizations – the new hospitalizations, as well as the ones that are, you know, existing in total – they are not dropping at the rate that they were dropping even a couple of weeks ago,” Pritzker said. “So I’m concerned about that.”
“We want to remove the mitigations as we approach the holidays,” Pritzker said Oct. 19. “But we want to make sure that these numbers keep going down before we do that.”
Pritzker noted that last fall and winter saw a spike in covid numbers and that he and his staff are closely monitoring to see if they may need to enact stricter covid restrictions to slow that spike if it begins to emerge.
“We’re watching to make sure that we’re on a good downward trajectory,” Pritzker said. “That’s what we were looking for back in May leading into June; it’s what we’re looking for now in order for us to possibly make changes. But if those numbers don’t improve, or if they go down, we may have to take other actions.”
Illinois is one of only six states which has moved from the “high” to “substantial” level of transmission, with the state having only 95 cases per 100,000 people. The threshold to go up to “high” is 100 per 100,000.
Illinois Department Of Public Health reported 15,131 new COVID-19 cases in the past week, along with 183 additional deaths and over 209,651 new vaccine doses administered.
Since the pandemic began, 1,680,908 cases of coronavirus have been reported in the state since the pandemic began, according to Illinois Department of Public Health. The state has had 25,590 confirmed COVID fatalities.
The state has administered 773,791 tests since last Friday, officials said, bringing the total to more than 34 million tests conducted during the pandemic.
The state’s seven-day positivity rate on all tests dropped to 2.2% from 2.5% last week, officials said. The rolling average seven-day positivity rate for cases as a percentage of total tests remained at 2% over the past week.
Just a few weeks ago,Pritzker announced even more mitigations banning students and staff from schools if they tested positive for covid or had exposure to the virus. That was in addition to the statewide mask mandate and other mitigations already in place.
In early August, Pritzker announced Illinois students preschool through 12 would be required to wear masks during school and indoor sports and activities, as reported on QuadCities.com. That requirement for kids to wear masks in all schools remains in effect.
For more ongoing coverage of this situation, stay tuned to your free, fact-based alternative media, QuadCities.com.