Capitol Fax.com - Your Illinois News Radar » 4,318 new confirmed and probable cases; 33 additional deaths; 3,335 hospitalized; 713 in ICU; 5.7 percent case positivity rate; 6.9 percent test positivity rate; Some regions opened up
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4,318 new confirmed and probable cases; 33 additional deaths; 3,335 hospitalized; 713 in ICU; 5.7 percent case positivity rate; 6.9 percent test positivity rate; Some regions opened up

Tuesday, Jan 19, 2021

* Press release…

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) today reported 4,318 new confirmed and probable cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Illinois, including 33 additional deaths.

    - Champaign County: 2 females 60s, 1 male 60s
    - Clay County: 1 male 70s
    - Cook County: 1 male 60s, 3 females 70s, 5 males 70s, 3 females 80s, 3 males 80s, 2 females 90s, 2 male 90s
    - DuPage County: 2 females 80s
    - Effingham County: 1 female 80s
    - Marion County: 1 male 60s
    - Montgomery County: 1 female 90s
    - Peoria County: 2 females 90s
    - Rock Island County: 1 male 70s
    - Sangamon County: 1 female 70s
    - Vermilion County: 1 male 60s

Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 1,076,532 cases, including 18,291 deaths, in 102 counties in Illinois. The age of cases ranges from younger than one to older than 100 years. Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have reported 71,533 specimens for a total 14,898,528. As of last night, 3,335 in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 713 patients were in the ICU and 395 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases as a percent of total test from January 12–18, 2021 is 5.7%. The preliminary seven-day statewide test positivity from January 12–18, 2021 is 6.9%.

As of last night, 781,350 doses of vaccine were delivered to providers in Illinois, including Chicago. In addition, approximately 304,600 doses have been allocated to the federal government’s Pharmacy Partnership Program for long-term care facilities. This brings the total Illinois doses to 1,085,950. IDPH is currently reporting a total of 508,732 vaccines administered, including 69,976 for long-term care facilities. Yesterday, a total of 13,169 doses were administered. The 7-day rolling average of vaccines administered daily is 22,134 doses.

*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. For health questions about COVID-19, call the hotline at 1-800-889-3931 or email dph.sick@illinois.gov.

* Meanwhile

With the state of Illinois launching multiple health care staffing contracts to increase hospital staffing, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is adjusting its mitigation metrics to reflect the additional staff. With the change, Regions 8, 9, 10, and 11 will move from the most restrictive Tier 3 to Tier 2. In addition, Region 1 and 6 have met the metrics to move to Tier 1, and Regions 3 and 5 have met the metrics to return to Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois Plan.

Hospital leaders and local health departments have communicated to IDPH that their primary capacity challenge is the need for additional staffing and stressed that state-facilitated staffing contracts will be critical in addressing this challenge. With this surge staffing program, IDPH and hospital leaders feel confident that metrics can safely move away from utilizing medical/surgical bed limits to move across mitigation tiers, allowing more regions to advance. The adjustment also recognizes the substantial progress the state has made since November 20, 2020 when Tier 3 mitigations were put in place.

“Hospital leaders have made clear the importance of staffing in their continued response to this pandemic and conveyed that staffing contracts will be extraordinarily valuable in their ability to meet the needs of their communities,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “We are pleased to see most of our regions move out of Tier 3 mitigations with this change, and it is critical that we maintain this progress. With new variants of COVID-19 spreading, it is more important than ever to follow the public health guidance that keeps people safe – wear your mask and watch your distance.”

To address capacity issues reported by Illinois hospitals, IDPH, in partnership with the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) and the Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS), has launched a surge staffing program. The program leverages the state’s larger contracting power to engage multiple staffing vendors and create access to a talent pool at greater scale than any individual hospital could achieve. Hospitals with rooms available to increase capacity but lacking the personnel to staff their beds may partner with the state to procure the staff they need. Hospitals that create orders will enter into a contract with the state to access this new staffing pool.

Hospital leaders have conveyed that due to the progress the state has made as well as the volatility in medical/surgical capacity this time of year, the state’s remaining metrics will appropriately monitor capacity and spread. While IDPH is working to allow regions greater flexibility in lifting the most stringent mitigations, public health officials will continue to carefully monitor hospital needs and test positivity in order to maintain the state’s progress.

This is particularly critical as new variants circulate. Early studies for the SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.1.7, which was first identified in the United Kingdom, have shown the variant may spread more rapidly and easily than what we have seen previously. Experts are predicting another possible surge due to this new variant in the next several months. Because of this, it is vital for people to remain vigilant and continue to wear their masks, keep 6-feet of distance, avoid large gatherings, and get vaccinated when they are eligible.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

12 Comments
  1. - Smalls - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 12:35 pm:

    Gov Pritzker had a big press conference on Friday talking about changes to the tiers. Didn’t mention a word about changing the metrics. Then at 4pm on a holiday, three days after his press conference on all the changes, they drop this major change. And then no press conference to discuss these changes. Very cowardly of the Governor, and this is coming from someone who generally has supported the restrictions.


  2. - Keyrock - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 12:44 pm:

    There has been a lot of reporting about how the new variants will likely cause another surge within a few weeks. I hope we don’t end up regretting the current loosening. I assume the Governor will be asked about this.


  3. - Dee Lay - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 12:47 pm:

    “The 7-day rolling average of vaccines administered daily is 22,134 doses.”
    That’s 154K doses/week

    Is that good, bad, or ugly compared to their Vaccine Plan (https://www.dph.illinois.gov/covid19/vaccination-plan) which has no measurable metrics?


  4. - Smalls - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 12:50 pm:

    ==Is that good, bad, or ugly ==

    At the rate of 22,134 per day, it would take roughly 1,150 days, or a little over 3 years, to vaccinate the entire population of the state. I realize not everyone will choose to be vaccinated, but regardless, it is UGLY.


  5. - Cool Papa Bell - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 1:01 pm:

    Smalls - I hope the trend is like it was for testing… Go back and look how many tests were turned in April and May… and then in August, September and October..

    Numbers have been slowly increasing and hopefully in about 30 days supply and actually sticking somebody with a needle will catch up.

    I figure we need somewhere near 80,000 a day for a sustained month or two to really make a dent.

    And yes.. not everyone will take a shot and it’s not open to under 18. So the total population is a little smaller that we actually need to get too.


  6. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 1:04 pm:

    ===or a little over 3 years, to vaccinate the entire population of the state===

    Yep. Once again, the federal government has completely failed.


  7. - Donnie Elgin - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 1:06 pm:

    = I realize not everyone will choose to be vaccinated=

    It is not just a question of choice. Pfizer’s vaccine has been authorized for ages 16 and up. Moderna’s vaccine is currently authorized for ages 18 and up. Therefore over 20% of the population of Illinois is not currently eligible
    Census data:
    18 years and over 9,173,842 73.9


  8. - Smalls - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 1:13 pm:

    Cool Papa Bell, the difference here is that we have had 9 months to prepare for the vaccine distribution, unlike testing in the early days. The failure is in expecting the same people that have to treat COVID patients to also be able to give vaccines. That is why the National Guard should have been the central point of coordination for every state. We need to start treating this like the emergency that it is.


  9. - Smalls - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 1:15 pm:

    ==18 years and over 9,173,842==

    Valid point. But even then, you are still talking 27 months at the current rate. Not acceptable by any means.


  10. - FEMA - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 1:36 pm:

    Glad President Biden created a department specifically created for emergencies like this and is willing to use it.
    Too bad we didn’t have FEMA around when Trump was president…


  11. - Cool Papa Bell - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 2:06 pm:

    Smalls - You and I are in agreement. But then tricky little things pop up.. Hyper cold storage for Pfizer shot, pretty cold storage for Moderna. It’s one reason we need the J & J shot because its going to be kept in a typical refrigerator. That will help it spread around to rural areas and small metros that don’t have ultra cold storage or the need to make sure your going to use every last drop in a case once you begin the defrosting.

    The people qualified in the Nat Guard to give a shot are people who are qualified in the civilian world to give a shot. The Guard doesn’t have a huge staff of nurses and doctors - they are citizen soldiers.

    The Guard needs to be, and will be, used to handle delivery of the vaccines and setting up and marshalling the logistics of running a site, building a drive through tent facility or operating the United Center as a vaccination site. The Guard is a really good defense force and a really good logistic company.

    Another final mile delivery issue that creeps up - A small number of people having an allergic reaction. Now we monitor everyone for 15 minutes or so after they have gotten the shot.

    And the current rate won’t stay the current rate.
    Today Dr. Scott Gottlieb told CNBC that really once we get about 100 million folks vaccinated the demand is going to drop off greatly. So lets get intense on giving shots for about two months and see what happens after that.


  12. - Jibba - Tuesday, Jan 19, 21 @ 8:04 pm:

    The amount of vaccine itself is the limiting factor at the moment. If we had twice as much, we could easily get it into arms.


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