Capitol - Your Illinois News Radar » *** UPDATED x2 - 34 counties on warning list *** 4,554 new cases, 38 additional deaths, 2,016 in hospitals, 5.1 percent positivity rate
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*** UPDATED x2 - 34 counties on warning list *** 4,554 new cases, 38 additional deaths, 2,016 in hospitals, 5.1 percent positivity rate

Friday, Oct 16, 2020

* Cases are up, but so is testing. More importantly, hospitalizations are still increasing, as is the positivity rate. Press release

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) today reported 4,554 new confirmed cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Illinois, the highest one-day case total, including 38 additional confirmed deaths. On September 4, 2020, IDPH reported 5,368 new cases of COVID-19 after a slowdown in data processing delayed reporting of some additional aggregate numbers. Cases not reported in the previous several days were included in the September 4, 2020 total. The slowdown did not affect the reporting of positive or negative results to individuals in any way.

    Christian County: 1 female 80s, 1 female 90s
    Clay County: 1 female 50s, 1 female 80s
    Cook County: 1 female 40s, 3 male 50s, 1 female 70s, 2 females 80s, 1 male 80s
    DuPage County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 90s
    Fayette County: 1 male 80s
    Ford County: 1 female 80s, 1 male 90s
    Jefferson County: 1 male 60s, 1 female 90s
    JoDaviess County: 1 male 80s, 1 male 90s
    Lake County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 90s
    Lawrence County: 1 male 70s
    Madison County: 1 male 60s, 1 male 70s
    McHenry County: 1 female 60s
    Ogle County: 1 male 70s
    Richland County: 1 female 70s, 1 female 90s
    Rock Island County: 1 male 60s
    Sangamon County: 1 female 80s
    St. Clair County: 1 male 70s, 1 male 80s
    Wayne County: 1 male 90s
    Will County: 1 male 80s, 1 female 90s
    Williamson County: 1 male 70s

Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 336,174 cases, including 9,165 deaths, in 102 counties in Illinois. The age of cases ranges from younger than one to older than 100 years. The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases as a percent of total test from October 9 – October 15 is 5.1%. Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have reported 87,759 specimens for a total of 6,618,768. As of last night, 2,016 people in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 410 patients were in the ICU and 151 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

IDPH is including both molecular and antigen tests in the number of statewide total test performed in Illinois. Previously, due to the limited number of antigen tests and limited information about antigen test accuracy, antigen tests were not included in the total number (which comprised less than 1% of total tests performed). Antigen tests, like BinaxNOW™, are now becoming more readily available, therefore, IDPH will include both molecular and antigen tests in its total number of tests starting October 15, 2020.

Following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, IDPH is now reporting separately both confirmed and probable cases and deaths on its website. Reporting probable cases will help show the potential burden of COVID-19 illness and efficacy of population-based non-pharmaceutical interventions. IDPH will update these data once a week.

*All data are provisional and will change. In order to rapidly report COVID-19 information to the public, data are being reported in real-time. Information is constantly being entered into an electronic system and the number of cases and deaths can change as additional information is gathered. Information for a death previously reported has changed, therefore, today’s numbers have been adjusted. For health questions about COVID-19, call the hotline at 1-800-889-3931 or email

*** UPDATE 1 *** Press release…

he Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) today reported 34 counties in Illinois are considered to be at a warning level for novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). A county enters a warning level when two or more COVID-19 risk indicators that measure the amount of COVID-19 increase.

Thirty-four counties are currently reported at a warning level – Adams, Alexander, Boone, Cass, Christian, Clay, Clinton, Crawford, DeKalb, DeWitt, Jasper, Jefferson, Jo Daviess, Johnson, Kane, Lee, Macon, McDonough, McHenry Mercer, Monroe, Pike, Pulaski, Randolph, Saline, Stephenson, Union, Vermilion, Warren, Washington, Wayne, Whiteside, Will, Winnebago.

Although the reasons for counties reaching a warning level varies, some of the common factors for an increase in cases and outbreaks are associated with gatherings in people’s homes, weddings and funerals, bars and clubs, university and college parties as well as college sports teams, family gatherings, long-term care facilities, correctional centers, schools, and cases among the community at large, especially people in their 20s.

Public health officials are observing businesses blatantly disregarding mitigation measures, people not social distancing, gathering in large groups, and not using face coverings. Mayors, local law enforcement, state’s attorneys, and other community leaders can be influential in ensuring citizens and businesses follow best practices.

Several counties are taking swift action to help slow spread of the virus, including increasing testing opportunities, stressing the importance of testing to providers, hiring additional contact tracers, working with schools, and meeting with local leaders.

IDPH uses numerous indicators when determining if a county is experiencing stable COVID-19 activity, or if there are warning signs of increased COVID-19 risk in the county. A county is considered at the warning level when at least two of the following metrics triggers a warning.

    • New cases per 100,000 people. If there are more than 50 new cases per 100,000 people in the county, this triggers a warning.
    • Number of deaths. This metric indicates a warning when the weekly number of deaths increases more than 20% for two consecutive weeks.
    • Weekly test positivity. This metric indicates a warning when the 7-day test positivity rate rises above 8%.
    • ICU availability. If there are fewer than 20% of intensive care units available in the region, this triggers a warning.
    • Weekly emergency department visits. This metric indicates a warning when the weekly percent of COVID-19-like-illness emergency department visits increase by more than 20% for two consecutive weeks.
    • Weekly hospital admissions. A warning is triggered when the weekly number of hospital admissions for COVID-19-like-illness increases by more than 20% for two consecutive weeks.
    • Tests performed. This metric is used to provide context and indicate if more testing is needed in the county.
    • Clusters. This metric looks at the percent of COVID-19 cases associated with clusters or outbreaks and is used to understand large increase in cases.

These metrics are intended to be used for local level awareness to help local leaders, businesses, local health departments, and the public make informed decisions about personal and family gatherings, as well as what activities they choose to do. The metrics are updated weekly, from the Sunday-Saturday of the prior week.

A map and information of each county’s status can be found on the IDPH website at

*** UPDATE 2 *** Yeah. This is just really bad

Gov. J.B. Pritzker warned Illinois residents Friday that the entire state is seeing a surge in confirmed cases of the coronavirus, as the state set a single-day record for new infections and reported 38 deaths linked to the virus.

“I am deeply concerned,” Pritzker said. “We are in a new wave here.” […]

Despite the surge, Pritzker said he was not considering imposing another stay-at-home order. Instead, he said he would impose restrictions region by region to stop the spread of the coronavirus.


The mayor of Rockford is among leaders in northwest Illinois pushing back on a state mandate that shut down indoor dining in the region.

Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara said the order from Gov. J.B. Pritzker to move Region 1 into Tier 2 mitigation status with additional restrictions because of an increase in positive COVID cases amounts to a death sentence for local bars and restaurants.

“They have implemented every single one of the mitigation factors that we have asked them to do,” McNamara said. “They take reservations. They’ll check temperatures. They’ll use hand sanitizer. They’ll not place utensils at the table. But to be closed down for indoor dining, as we are going into the colder weeks and months, we’re really just saying close your doors, you’re not going to make it through the holiday season.”

If they had actually been following the guidelines, then the region wouldn’t be so out of whack. Winnebago County’s latest one-day positivity rate was 14.7 percent.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Precinct Captain - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 12:22 pm:

    The DeVore Special

  2. - BilboSwaggins - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 12:24 pm:

    Second wave is creeping up much faster than anticipated. I wonder how long before we’re in a statewide lockdown again.

  3. - TheInvisibleMan - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 12:27 pm:

    Spring was just the dry run.

    I took some time this week to casually buy the things I don’t want to be stuck fighting for in lines in another 60 days, or worse not able to buy at all because people are obviously going to be panic buying again.

    Mostly, I wanted to make sure to make a few trips to the local dispensary.

  4. - Donnie Elgin - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 12:32 pm:

    Expanded early in-person voting starts Monday. Get it done before mitigation

  5. - Diverdown - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 12:38 pm:

    I wonder what amount of antigen testing comprises the positive cases. We have had a huge jump since they started including these the last 2 days.

  6. - M - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 1:04 pm:

    Once again people have conspiracy theories on why cases are up. This is serious. This is not the flu.

  7. - lake county democrat - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 1:15 pm:

    We can rapidly lower these numbers with a lockdown that is “remarkable for its stringency and its brevity.” The key is the stringency - you gotta enforce.

  8. - The Dude - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 1:17 pm:

    I’ve been warning everyone here about how much worse its going to once we start breathing more of each other’s air in the winter.

    I know what I’m talking about.

  9. - DownSouth - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 1:20 pm:

    Unfortunately until there are real consequences for those who blatantly ignore all recommendations, mitigation orders etc. I don’t see this getting better anytime soon.

  10. - Montrose - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 1:24 pm:

    I can’t decide if a cold winter would be better or worse. Worse because folks aren’t able to manage cabin fever with walks/safe outdoor activities or better because people will stay in their homes and not spread the virus.

  11. - N - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 1:29 pm:

    Everybody has to leave their house at some point. Not EVERYONE has a job that allows for remote work. I really wonder why cases are up. Illinois residents don’t take it serious

  12. - Groundhog Day - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 1:42 pm:

    There was an interesting article out this week hypothesizing that UV light is the biggest factor for the environment. And our UV light is fast ebbing. It may be that personal behavior in the summer was less of a factor. Now that fall is here, we are in trouble. Dr. Fauci and others were literally begging the country all summer to get the numbers down before fall. It happened some places, but not in many others. This could make last spring look like a walk in the park.

  13. - Nathan - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 1:50 pm:

    Once again, Region 8 (Kane/DuPage Counties) positivity rate is up, now at 7.4%. That trend line in the past 10 days is not good (was at 4.8% 10 days ago). We could be shut down next week if it continues at this rate.

  14. - all luck - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 2:16 pm:

    Rich can you ask why Coles County keeps reporting much less positives on their Region 6 numbers than the number of positives released on the Covid statistics page or the county themselves?

  15. - Club J - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 3:31 pm:

    Well it seems DeVore has really got Rockford and Winnebago County scared that he will drag them into court. He’s already bragging about his victory in that area. The numbers really show a victory. I’m sure those who are sick are thankful to DeVore. He’s dangerous.

  16. - Roadrager - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 3:31 pm:

    Mayor McNamara needs to take a look across the border and see how much he truly feels like pressing his luck. Rock County, Wisconsin’s 7-day positivity rate is just shy of 40 percent, and the President is about to hold one of his patented superspreader events in Janesville.

  17. - Former Merit Comp - Friday, Oct 16, 20 @ 4:15 pm:

    In my county our cases doubled in the month after our university students returned on campus. The students I’ve come into contact with are not taking it serious and tell me about all the parties they attend with no one wearing masks or social distancing. Until that mindset changes in any age group nothing will improve. Saw a talk show this morning where an actor said their movie production was moved to New Zealand where the population and government took it seriously and it’s now non existent and there are zero restrictions.

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