Suburban Cook County and the Metro East region outside St. Louis will come under stricter rules meant to curb the spread of COVID-19 on Wednesday, including a shuttering of indoor dining and bar service. […]
The suburban Cook County region has had eight consecutive days of test positivity rate increases and seven days of increased hospital admissions. It is the first region to surpass the state-set thresholds in these two areas at the same time. The other regions that have triggered tougher rules have done so by reaching an 8% positivity rate threshold.
* Two issues merge…
Gov. Pritzker is pushing another wave of business lockdowns despite the courts overturning his emergency orders.
Small businesses are hanging on by a thread and many won’t survive. What’s more, Pritzker is trying to push a progressive tax that would be a nail in the coffin of businesses that survive the pandemic.
Join us for an event featuring two of America’s top economic minds, Dr. Art Laffer and Stephen Moore.
They will discuss their recently published comprehensive study describing the devastating impact the proposed “fair tax” will have on the future of Illinois.
What, no Donna Arduin?
The U.S. set a daily record Friday for new confirmed coronavirus infections and nearly matched it Saturday with 83,178, data published by Johns Hopkins University shows. Close to 8.6 million Americans have contracted the coronavirus since the pandemic began, and about 225,000 have died; both totals are the world’s highest. About half the states have seen their highest daily infection numbers so far at some point in October.
* ABC News…
A recent surge in positive COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in El Paso, Texas, has caused city officials to order a curfew for residents.
The curfew has been imposed for 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. to limit mobility in the community, El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego said at a press conference Sunday. For the next two weeks, citizens are required to stay home unless they are traveling to and from work or accessing essential services.
Only one person is permitted to access essential services at a time, and trick-or-treat activities on Halloween are not allowed, Samaniego said. Violators will be fined $250 for failing to wear a face mask and $500 for any other violations of the order. […]
Since Oct. 1, the county has seen a 160% increase in COVID-19 positivity rates and a 300% jump in hospitalizations.
Intensive care units at all area hospitals reached 100% capacity as of Saturday, Samaniego said. An overflow of ICU patients are being airlifted to other cities.
* The Salt Lake Tribune…
With new coronavirus cases shattering records on a daily basis, Utah’s hospitals are expected to begin rationing care in a week or two.
That’s the prediction of Greg Bell, president of the Utah Hospital Association, who said administrators of the state’s hospitals confronted Gov. Gary Herbert on Thursday with a grim list: Criteria they propose doctors should use if they are forced to decide which patients can stay in overcrowded intensive care units.
* Speaking of hospitals…
There are more than 41,000 Covid-19 patients hospitalized in the United States, a 40 percent rise in the past month. And unlike during the earlier months of the pandemic, more of those patients are being cared for not in metropolitan regions but in more sparsely populated parts of the country, where the medical infrastructure is less robust. […]
Skeptics need only look at places like Kansas City, Mo., where this month medical centers turned away ambulances because they had no room for more patients. And in Idaho, a hospital that was 99 percent full warned last week that it may have to transfer coronavirus patients to hospitals as far away as Seattle and Portland, Ore.
Hospitals in hard-hit parts of the country are resorting to a tactic commonly used during the pandemic as it eats away at medical resources: limiting their services.
In Tennessee on Saturday, the Maury Regional Medical Center in Columbia suspended all elective procedures requiring an overnight stay to make room for Covid-19 patients. Most of the facility’s 26 I.C.U. beds are already filled.
* A bit of good news…
To better understand the experiences of teenagers during this unique time, my colleagues and I fielded a survey of 1,523 U.S. teens from May to July this year, asking about their mental health, family time, sleep, technology use, and views on the race-related protests and the police. We assessed mental well-being using four measures: life satisfaction, happiness, symptoms of depression, and loneliness. We then compared the 2020 teens’ responses with responses to identical questions from a similar survey in 2018.
Surprisingly, teens’ mental health did not collectively suffer during the pandemic when the two surveys are compared. The percentage of teens who were depressed or lonely was actually lower in 2020 than in 2018, and the percentage who were unhappy or dissatisfied with life was only slightly higher.
This relatively positive picture for mental health occurred despite many of the challenges faced by the teens in our survey. Nearly one out of three teens (29 percent) knew someone diagnosed with COVID-19. More than one out of four (27 percent) said a parent had lost a job, and exactly one out of four was worried about their families having enough food to eat. Nearly two-thirds (63 percent) were worried about catching the virus, and two-thirds worried about not being able to see their friends.
So why was teen mental health stable, or even better, during the pandemic?
Go read the rest.
* Tribune live blog headlines…
Cook County to give direct payments to suburban residents hurt by COVID-19 pandemic: ‘What they need is cash’
Coronavirus deaths are rising again in the US and cases are climbing in nearly every state
Farm-fresh produce delivered to your door? Because of COVID-19, a growing number of services are offering just that.
Cook County officials to announce availability of COVID-19 cash assistance program for residents
* Sun-Times live blog…
Illinois one of seven states reporting record high COVID-19 infection levels this weekend
Trump’s top aide: ‘we’re not going to control the pandemic’
18-year-old University of Dayton student from La Grange has died of COVID-19.
Democrat Rep. Sean Casten, Republican Jeanne Ives at odds over COVID-19 response in Illinois 6 Congress race