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COVID-19 roundup

Wednesday, Oct 28, 2020 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Are Lake and McHenry next?

The region that includes Lake and McHenry counties could face the same restrictions as early as Saturday. Positive COVID-19 results, measured as a seven-day average, exceeded 8% of tests given for two straight days in those counties. A third day would trigger more restrictions.

Region 6, which includes Champaign County, Decatur and much of the Eastern Bloc region, is getting up there. It’s latest positivity rate average is 7.9 percent, excluding the UIUC results.

* Speaking of Region 6, here’s WCIA

With positive tests on the rise across the state, more people are getting tested. The testing site at the Market Place Mall is a prime example.

On Tuesday morning, more than 100 cars were in line. They were lined up around the mall, making it difficult to get in.

The drive-thru testing site has not seen this kid of response since it opened in May.

That doesn’t sound good.

* This is definitely not good

Hospitalizations for COVID-19 continue to increase across the state. As of Monday night, the state reported 2,758 people in Illinois were hospitalized with COVID-19, including 595 in intensive care unit beds and 241 using ventilators. Those numbers were once again new highs since early to mid-June.

* Confirmation of what most of us already know

Researchers at the University of Kansas report counties with mask mandates thwarted significant escalation in transmission of COVID-19 and counties operating without a requirement people wear a face covering suffered steady infection rate increases. […]

“Cases in counties with a mask mandate stopped increasing. They didn’t go away. They stopped increasing,” Ginther said. “And, cases in counties without a mandate, starting in mid-August, just kind of went crazy.”

The KU researchers demonstrated Kansas counties without the mask order experienced a surge in coronavirus infection rates that climbed from about 10 cases per 100,0000 in July to nearly 40 cases per 100,000 in October. The number of cases for counties covered by the mask order plateaued since July at around 20 cases per 100,000.

Masks are not 100 percent effective, but they do work. Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good. The study is here.

* Reuters

Antibodies against the novel coronavirus declined rapidly in the British population during the summer, a study found on Tuesday, suggesting protection after infection may not be long lasting and raising the prospect of waning immunity in the community.

Scientists at Imperial College London have tracked antibody levels in the British population following the first wave of COVID-19 infections in March and April.

Their study found that antibody prevalence fell by a quarter, from 6% of the population around the end of June to just 4.4% in September. That raises the prospect of decreasing population immunity ahead of a second wave of infections in recent weeks that has forced local lockdowns and restrictions.

Although immunity to the novel coronavirus is a complex and murky area, and may be assisted by T cells, as well as B cells that can stimulate the quick production of antibodies following re-exposure to the virus, the researchers said the experience of other coronaviruses suggested immunity might not be enduring.

* SJ-R

A church and nursing home in Jacksonville are among the latest places with COVID-19 outbreaks, health officials said Tuesday.

The Morgan County Department of Public Health said 11 people who have attended Westfair Baptist Church had the virus. Department officials also confirmed two residents and two staff members of Heritage Health Therapy and Senior Care were infected.

Dale Bainter, Morgan County’s public health administrator, said there is a lot of community spread of the virus.

“We’re just seeing a lot of small clusters and pockets, and … family spread.” He said it’s sometimes hard to identify the origin of a case.

“Let’s say we’ve got two outbreaks, but we might have a family … impacted by both,” Bainter said. “You don’t know which caused the other one.”

* Not the greatest idea I’ve ever heard

DeKalb County Board member Larry West, a Republican representing the county’s first district, also weighed in on mitigation enforcement in a Saturday social media comment on a public Daily Chronicle social media post.

“Here is an idea….as long as any business has restrictions on it and employees and owners are not able to make ends meet, the state government should not be paid,” West wrote. “This would be the governor, his cabinet and advisors, all state senate and representatives and health department. This should include county boards and health departments. Being a board member I would support this until our local businesss are safe.”

* Other stuff…

* Chicago election officials still looking to assign polling places for 7 precincts in the final stretch to Election Day

* 9 Winnebago County sheriff’s deputies, 1 sergeant test positive for COVID-19

* DuPage County Sheriff’s Office Launches Internal Probe After Staff Are Seen Dining Inside Restaurant, Against Governor’s Orders


  1. - Sayitaintso - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 6:02 am:

    Larry: “Here is an idea”…
    Gavel Person: ‘Thanks, Larry. Now, do we have any GOOD ideas from the rest of you?”

  2. - The Dude - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 6:56 am:

    DeKalb County Board member Larry West

    “Here is an idea….as long as any business has restrictions on it and employees and owners are not able to make ends meet, the state government should not be paid,”

    I’ve never understood this logic. I only show up to work to be paid. Cut off pay and you don’t get any work.

    If anything we should be hiring more public health officials and doing more to limit the spread through enforcement.

    Businesses like bars simply are not safe period and they are not even remotely essential. Im getting sick of people crying over their money when others are crying over loved ones.

  3. - Chatham Resident - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 8:13 am:

    Don’t forget Region 3 (Springfield/Quincy/Western Bloc aka “Forgottonia”). Positivity hit 8% for the first day yesterday.

  4. - Flyin' Elvis'-Utah Chapter - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 8:26 am:

    “Here is an idea”-

    Playing fast and loose with the word idea, aren’t we.

  5. - From Decatur - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 8:40 am:

    There has been free drive thru testing at the Decatur Civic Center for awhile now. I’ve been seeing a lot of cars go through. Honestly they need to adjust the numbers if there is more testing going on.

  6. - lake county democrat - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 8:42 am:

    Not only do mask mandates work, but the better quality masks (the foreign N95 equivalents now allowed by the FDA) work even better in that they offer the wearer a degree of protection, as opposed to protecting others from the wearer. I wish this was better known as widespread wearing of such masks even if just by those willing to wear masks would slow the spread even more. (Of course, I also wish we had a president who would invoke the war powers act and make high quality masks cheap and ubiquitously available for health care workers and the public as well, but common sense is in such demand these days…)

  7. - cermak_rd - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 8:42 am:

    The immediate problem I can see of making payment of government officials contingent on people getting the results they want from governent would be an increase in only the super wealthy who can afford to do without paychecks getting involved in government. JB can do quite well without his salary. Do we want to make it so only folks like him can be in government?

  8. - Perrid - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 8:50 am:

    Larry West clearly needs to lose his next election, if that’s his idea of helping.

  9. - JS Mill - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 8:52 am:

    @lcd is right on all accounts.

    Larry West should focus his efforts a little closer to home. Unless he wants the national guard called up and in every town, enforcement works best if it is done locally.

  10. - cermak_rd - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 8:54 am:

    Wouldn’t that idea (don’t pay the gov or his staff if he doesn’t get the results I like) just restrict government to the very wealthy? I mean, JB doesn’t need his salary and could probably pay his entire stuff out of cash on hand.

  11. - Chatham Resident - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 9:05 am:

    ==all state senate and representatives==

    Quinn tried that stunt in July 2013 and look how that ended up.

  12. - Publius - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 9:15 am:

    Maybe we shouldn’t be paying the sheriff’s if they don’t want to enforce the these restrictions.

  13. - OneMan - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 9:18 am:

    Rock Chalk Jayhawk KU

    Sorry the oldest got her degree from there, youngest is there now. Since they get/have gotten so much of my money I have a bias.

    For what it is worth so far the campus seems to have avoided a second wave post resturn to campus.

  14. - What's in a name? - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 9:22 am:

    Did the Governor actually take his $1.00 per year? If so forcing him to forego his 1/3 of cent every day probably is the silver bullet.

  15. - Smalls - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 9:24 am:

    DuPage county closed their testing facility at 9:30am yesterday, as they had reached their limit for the day. The lack of testing is quickly becoming an issue in the Chicago suburban area.
    And yes, I realize we are one of the leaders in tests, but we are falling behind with the need.

  16. - illinifan - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 9:31 am:

    Testing is still being limited. A friend is in the hospital with COVID. Her husband wanted a test and was told not to bother and to assume he has the virus. Fortunately he has no symptoms (which is why no test). In the meantime he is at least quarantining.

  17. - @misterjayem - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 9:46 am:

    Despite the Lake County Health Department’s recommendation that ALL public and private schools in the county take an “adaptive pause” and transition to remote learning, the brain-geniuses of the Lake Forest Dist #67 Board of Education want to continue its current hybrid in-person learning.

    In case you wondered why the pandemic’s third wave is a thing.

    – MrJM

  18. - CookR - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 9:48 am:

    Region 11, Chicago, just hit the same double-whammy of increased positivity and increased hospital admissions for seven days that put mitigations in place in Region 10, Suburban Cook.

  19. - Smalls - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 10:03 am:

    And DuPage County just shut down testing today at 9:55am. That is a major problem.

  20. - Chicagonk - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 10:05 am:

    Antibody study is interesting, but only focused on 1 type of antibody.

  21. - Petey L. - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 10:09 am:

    illinifan, it is an automatic quarantine for a person living with someone who has tested positive

  22. - stateandlake - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 10:10 am:

    Yesterday I went through the Lake County testing lane in Waukegan. Arrived at 2pm. Had a 90 minute wait to get tested. And to MrJM’s comment, the two private schools in my Lake County community are still in full in-person attendance model. Hunker down folks, it’s gonna be a long winter.

  23. - Give Me A Break - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 10:20 am:

    Had to get tested last week due to a co worker having family members they lived with test positive. In addition, I had flu like symptoms a few days before after a flu shot.

    I was surprised when my Doc ordered the rapid test and had the results back in less than an hour. This was at Springfield Clinic’s drive up facility.

    I’ve heard from others they may be waiting up to a week for results from the “non rapid testing”.

  24. - RNUG - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 10:49 am:

    == had the results back in less than an hour. ==

    Interesting they can do 1 hour now.

    Got tested there a couple of months ago before a procedure; it took 4 days to know the results (negative).

    A friend was tested there 2 weeks ago, said they would have the results in 4 days (also negative) but told to quarantine for a week before their procedure.

  25. - JS Mill - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 10:50 am:

    =the brain-geniuses of the Lake Forest Dist #67 Board of Education want to continue its current hybrid in-person learning.=

    On a call with the ISBE and IDPH, the person representing the IDPH was asked about the possibility of a state order to close schools after Thanksgiving. The response was that they did not see that happening and believed that schools were the safest place for kids.

    With respect, schools are safer for kids if they are enforcing mask use and distancing. The reporting on school-based spread is that it isn’t happening. Community spread is, a nightmare and I understand that the kids are out in the community when not in school, but the school-based spread nightmare that was predicted and/or feared by many is not a reality.

    With respect.

  26. - Southern - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 10:55 am:

    Mitigations, schmitigations. Down here in Region 4 (metro-east), most restaurant and bar owners are saying they’ll ignore the latest directives. Almost everyone down here is on the keep-everything-open wagon. And there’s no changing their minds. They rattle off every argument:
    1. Fake news
    2. Fake news designed to hurt Trump
    3. Hospitals make more money for Covid patients
    4. Herd immunity
    5. The government, or hospitals, or coroners, is listing deaths as being due to Covid, when it actually was due to a heart attack, stroke, car crash, skydiving accident, etc.
    6. I’ll close my business when they close Walmart
    7. It only kills old people
    8. I’ll go out of business if I comply
    9. Our economy will be ruined
    10. Governor’s orders are illegal
    11. Tom DeVore
    12. Some family member of Pritzker went somewhere
    13. Pritzker is a (fill in the blank)
    14. Virus will disappear after election
    15. Make America Great Again

  27. - cermak_rd - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 11:04 am:


    I can empathize with 8 and 9. It’s a tough position to be in. But 7 is just seems sociopathic to me. And also unwise. The median age last I checked in the rural parts of IL skew older. And no one is going to replace those people should they pass on. Additionally, deciding the portion of the population most likely to vote and to be community spirited is disposable does not seem wise.

  28. - illinfan - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 11:44 am:

    Petey N, I knew of the required quarantine, the point is he was exposed but not offered a test. I should add I have a nephew who is an ICU nurse in Arizona and he was exposed. He, his wife, and father in law who lives with them all were able to be tested, no questions asked and no symptoms required and results texted to them in one hour. The test they had was the deep nasal swab test not the drive thru version. In Illinois that would be a 3 day delay at least to get an answer. There is still a testing problem in Illinois. I do think part of this is the Feds are helping red states more than the blue states.

  29. - thechampaignlife - Wednesday, Oct 28, 20 @ 1:05 pm:

    I can confirm the Champaign state testing site had a 90 minute wait last Thursday, probably because they only administered the test to 2 cars at a time instead of the 4 they can handle. The results came back in a little over 36 hours, which was decent considering they moved test processing to Peoria.

    The contracted testers could definitely use some process improvement, though. It was a bit confusing and repetitive to talk with the 3 staff while in line, and they hand wrote the name and DOB on the tubes with a bad pen. Much slower than the UIUC experience with printed labels.

  30. - buy n95 masks - Friday, Nov 6, 20 @ 4:20 am:

    Sounds okay on paper-quite possibly won’t get off the ground in practice, sorry..

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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