CHICAGO — Ninety-seven more Illinoisans were killed by coronavirus, the state reported Tuesday.
Among the most recent victims were 18 people in Cook County, including a woman in her 30s. At least 10,875 people have died from COVID-19 in Illinois, and another 442 deaths are considered to be probably related to coronavirus.
The state also reported 12,601 confirmed cases in the past day. That brings the total number of confirmed cases in Illinois up to 597,849.
Officials are deeply worried about this second surge, saying hospital staff could soon be overwhelmed and there won’t be enough beds and health care workers to care for everyone who will become ill. Already, Illinois is seeing a record number of people hospitalized with COVID-19, and deaths have skyrocketed.
In Chicago, it’s estimated every one in 18 people has an active, potentially contagious case of coronavirus right now, Dr. Allison Arwady, head of the Chicago Department of Public Health, said during a Tuesday morning livestream. Even people who have recovered from COVID-19 can become re-infected, she said.
“Even if you’ve had COVID, we need you wearing a mask, we need you doing all the same protective things,” Arwady said.
Chicago is under a stay at home advisory that started Monday morning. People are being asked to stay home as much as possible, leaving only for essential things like grocery shopping; to work from home if possible; to stop gathering with anyone outside their household; and to stop traveling.
People should also wear masks and wash their hands regularly, officials have said.
“We really, really want folks to not have people over to their home right now … . If it’s a social visit, now is not the time to be having a social visit,” Arwady said.
The surge in new cases in Chicago — and across Illinois — can only partially be explained by increased testing; in reality, there are more cases because coronavirus is spreading so much, officials have said. There’s evidence of that in the way positivity rates and COVID-19 deaths and hospitalizations have rapidly risen in recent weeks.
Illinois’ seven-day positivity rate was at 12.5 percent with 94,205 tests reported. It was also at 12.5 percent Monday. The figure represents total confirmed cases divided by total tests.
Illinois’ seven-day test positivity, which measures how many tests were positive out of total tests, hit 14.5 percent. It was at 14.7 percent Monday.
As of Monday night, 5,887 people were hospitalized with coronavirus in Illinois, including 1,158 people in the ICU and 545 people using ventilators.
In Chicago, 12 deaths and 2,067 confirmed cases were reported since Monday. There have been at least 3,228 deaths from COVID-19 in Chicago and 138,383 confirmed cases, according to state data.
An average of 2,296 confirmed cases are being reported per day, a 31 percent increase from the prior week. The city’s seven-day positivity rate has risen to 16 percent, up from 12.9 percent the week before.
The city is also seeing an average of seven deaths per day; for months, that number hadn’t risen above two or three per day, but it’s been going up the past several weeks.
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