New round of statewide shutdowns as Illinois COVID-19 cases continue to surge

Gov.+JB+Pritzker+gives+a+COVID-19+update+in+Murphysboro%2C+Ill.+Oct.+19.+2020+%E2%80%9CIf+you+are+getting+tired+and+you%E2%80%99ve+let+your+guard+down+now+is+the+time+to+pick+it+back+up+again%2C%E2%80%9D+Pritzker+said.+%E2%80%9CThings+are+getting+worse%2C+now+is+the+time+to+wear+a+mask+wherever+you+go%2C+get+your+flu+shot%2C+forgo+unnecessary+trips+or+gatherings+and+take+extra+care+to+stay+six+feet+away+from+each+other+especially+in+public.%E2%80%9D+Pritzker+announced+stricter+COVID-19+mitigations+for+region+5+at+this+update++including+the+temporary+closure+of+indoor+dining+and+a+ban+on+gatherings+of+25+or+more+people.+%0A%0A

Kallie Cox | @KallieECox

Gov. JB Pritzker gives a COVID-19 update in Murphysboro, Ill. Oct. 19. 2020 “If you are getting tired and you’ve let your guard down now is the time to pick it back up again,” Pritzker said. “Things are getting worse, now is the time to wear a mask wherever you go, get your flu shot, forgo unnecessary trips or gatherings and take extra care to stay six feet away from each other especially in public.” Pritzker announced stricter COVID-19 mitigations for region 5 at this update including the temporary closure of indoor dining and a ban on gatherings of 25 or more people.

Illinois public health officials announced on Nov. 17 new mitigation efforts due to the increase in coronavirus cases throughout Illinois.

The governor’s office released plans for the Tier Three Resurgence Mitigations which will take effect Friday, Nov. 20.

The mitigation efforts would once again close indoor restaurants and bars, but outdoor dining and pick-up are still available. 

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School closures are left up to local school boards, and stores are required to operate at limited capacity.

“There is no denying that the state is headed in the wrong direction with increased cases, hospitalizations, and deaths,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike.

For a region to go back down to tier two efforts, they must drop below a 12% test positivity rate, maintain at least 20% ICU bed availability, and have a week-long drop in COVID-19 cases.

The Illinois Department of Health updates each region’s status.

(See more: Illinois Regional Criteria

There is still no confirmed date for a vaccine release, but both Pfizer and Moderna have confirmed the development of an effective coronavirus vaccine.

Staff reporter George Wiebe can be reached at  [email protected]

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