Illinois COVID-19 Numbers Edge Upward But Still Among Lowest In Nation

By WBBM Newsradio 780 AM & 105.9 FM

CHICAGO (WBBM Newsradio) — Some key coronavirus statistics have edged up in Illinois in the last few days.

The state’s Department of Public Health on Saturday reported 1,195 new confirmed cases of coronavirus and 24 additional deaths. As of Friday night, 1,398 people in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 321 patients were in the ICU and 139 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

Saturday's numbers are a short fall from Friday, when the state saw a small uptick of 1,317 cases of the virus and 25 deaths. That’s a noticeable increase over just a week ago: On July 4, Illinois reported 862 new cases, including 10 deaths.

Early this week, the number of daily deaths had dropped to 6 — the lowest level since late March.

Meantime, the state’s “positivity rate” rose to 3.0 %, an increase from the 2.6% rate Illinois had reported in recent days. The 3.0 % rate of positive test results still is one of the lowest in the nation. 

The higher number of new cases could be due in part to Illinois’ ramped-up testing. The state turned around nearly 34,000 tests in the most recent 24-hour reporting period. In April, the state and its partner labs were having a hard time processing 10,000 tests a day.

Illinois Gov. Pritzker has said that coronavirus trends — good or bad — are identified over several days, rather than a single 24-hour period. He has said he will re-impose restrictions in regions of the state where metrics spike. Currenly, Illinois is in Phase 4 of reopening. Residents are expected to wear masks or facial coverings in public, in situations where they cannot keep six feet of social distance.

Even though the state is seeing low coronavirus numbers, the IDPH is reminding people to "do it anyway" — meaning, where a mask and practice appropriate distancing when outside to do your part in limiting the virus spread. 
A video released by the department Saturday shows different family scenarios playing on a time when you had to "do it anyway" even if you might not want to. 
"This is a 'do it anyway' moment, when you're out in public wear a mask," the video narrator said. "You may not want but you'll protect others if you happen to be infected So do it anyway and you do your part."

As Illinoisans, we must do our part to prevent the spread of COVID-19! #DoItAnyway

— IDPH (@IDPH) July 11, 2020