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COVID-19 roundup

Wednesday, Oct 27, 2021

* Daily Herald

New cases of COVID-19 among Illinois children ages 5 to 11 reached 277 Tuesday, the same day a federal panel of experts recommended use of Pfizer’s vaccine for that age group.

New infections in children age 4 and younger came to 73, the Illinois Department of Public Health reported. Combined, the tally of 350 represents 15.8% of the 2,213 total new COVID-19 cases announced Tuesday.

* Press release excerpt…

Governor JB Pritzker today announced that $505 million of the initial tranche of Illinois’ 2021 emergency rental assistance from the federal government has been distributed, as Illinois leads the nation in getting this funding out the door faster than any other state. More than 57,000 households have now received assistance through the Illinois Rental Payment Program (ILRPP). With Illinois’ initial 2021 allocation of rental relief funds fully paid out, IHDA will open a new round of assistance funded by a separate federal bill on Monday, November 8, 2021.

According to the latest report from the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Illinois is a national leader in providing critical emergency rental assistance to vulnerable households. Illinois leads all other states in disbursing this initial emergency rental assistance with 84 percent of all funds allocated to the State as well as directly to other municipalities, and now in the hands of eligible renters and landlords as they regain their financial footing. This compares to the national rate of just 23 percent of federal dollars making it into the hands of renters and landlords in September. The deadline for states to disburse 65 percent of the money they received under the first batch of funding was September 30. […]

ILRPP builds on the state’s comprehensive rental assistance programs launched by the Pritzker administration in 2020. The current statewide program provides up to $25,000 in emergency rental assistance to cover up to 15 months of past due rent and up to three months of future rent payments for tenants suffering a financial hardship related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Grant payments were made directly to the landlord on behalf of the tenant as long as the landlord agreed to forgo an eviction.

* Last I checked, Chicago was still within the boundaries of the state of Illinois, which has a mask mandate

Chicago’s top doctor said Tuesday that she hopes Chicago’s mask mandate will end “soon” and provided a metric for when the city could remove the requirement.

Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady said in a Facebook Live event that, per U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, the city would need to be below 200 cases per day to remove the mask mandate.

“Our numbers are going down,” Arwady said. “When we get below 200 per day with good testing, per the CDC, moving out of that ’substantial transmission’ risk, that’s what [the mask mandate] would be coming off.”

* I told subscribers about this yesterday morning and then Crain’s ran its own little blurb later in the day without attribution…

Rep. Flowers’ claim sent me on a hunt today for how crack and the the vaccine are made. Yeah, OK, I was a little bored.

Basically, cocaine and baking soda or ammonia are heated with water to make crack. The only active ingredient in the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines is messenger ribonucleic acid. Lipids give it a “greasy” exterior, salts balance the acidity and table sugar keeps it stable when frozen.

So, I’m not quite sure where that conspiracy theory came from (I even Googled it several different ways to no avail), but it’s definitely quite weird.

* Daily Journal

While five employees were granted a court-issued extension in regard to receiving the COVID-19 vaccination to continue working for Riverside Healthcare, that same extension does not cover any other employee.

The hospital, in a Tuesday email message to its staff, noted the Oct. 31 deadline regarding being vaccinated remains in effect.

“The court ruling does not apply to any other Riverside employees,” the statement read.

Of the organization’s 2,913 employees, 90 percent have been vaccinated. Employees not vaccinated by Oct. 31 face a two-week unpaid suspension. If they are not vaccinated following the suspension, they will be terminated.

* Related…

* CPS enrollment continues to plummet: ‘I would have never imagined seeing this steep of a decline’: Enrollment is down 3% compared to the 340,658 students counted in the last school year — when the COVID-19 pandemic was well underway — and 7% versus the 355,156 students in the 2019-20 year. The figures cover more than 600 schools, which include district-run, charter, contract and SAFE schools.

* Former hotel workers sue Swissotel Chicago, accused it of violating ‘Right to Return to Work’ ordinance

* Gov. JB Pritzker works with doctors, schools to offer COVID-19 vaccines to kids ages 5-11

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - BlueBin - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 12:43 pm:

    I look forward to this Rich Miller reboot of breaking bad

  2. - Pot calling kettle - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 12:48 pm:

    Water, while not “synthetic,” is used in the manufacture of almost everything; so, there’s that…

  3. - Roadrager - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 12:57 pm:

    I have also heard, through sources as reputable as Rep. Flowers’, that the water is changing the sexual orientation of frogs. I genuinely hope she gets much, much louder and more involved about this.

  4. - Amalia - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 1:12 pm:

    somebody conduct a class for Democratic State Reps on the facts about covid-19…..

  5. - Dotnonymous - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 1:27 pm:

    The cracks have never been more visible.

  6. - Lurker - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 1:36 pm:

    Mandate the vaccine for all State employees

  7. - Unconventional wisdom - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 1:36 pm:

    I have been a strong advocate of everyone taking their Covid shots. I do no understand why people refuse to do so.

    BUT, when people have taken their shots they should not be relegated to the same standards as those who have not.

    Research first surfaced by The New York Times has found that the chances of the average, fully vaccinated American contracting COVID-19 are about 1 in 5,000 per day.

    Treating everyone the same is going to be counterproductive. People who have taken their shots are getting tired of the same requirements. This will only lead to more cynicism of this issue. Perhaps a new outbreak or new data will change what have put forth. Time will tell.

    There needs to be a common sense approach that does not include the Texas /Florida mentality and also is not the Illinois approach.

  8. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 1:41 pm:

    ===they should not be relegated to the same standards===

    It sounds good, but are you gonna make bars and restaurants divide everyone up? I dunno. It’s not like a smoking section.

  9. - Rudy’s teeth - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 1:50 pm:

    From where did Ms. Flowers receive her degree in biochemistry? Perhaps from the University of Facebook.

  10. - Rusty Shackleford - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 1:51 pm:

    Illinois is one of only six states with a mask mandate still in place. I have not seen a lot of data to justify this decision, and perhaps more people would be encouraged to get the vaccine if they weren’t required to continue following the same restrictions that are required of the unvaccinated.

  11. - Common Sense - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 1:59 pm:

    Thanks for the crack recipe but honestly kind of wish you would share a few cookie recipes instead.

  12. - AC - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 2:06 pm:

    ==Illinois is one of only six states with a mask mandate still in place. I have not seen a lot of data to justify this decision==

    65 linked studies showing the benefit of cloth masks in a community:

    And that’s just poor quality cloth masks, there’s evidence better quality masks would perform even better:

  13. - Pundent - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 2:10 pm:

    =Illinois is one of only six states with a mask mandate still in place.=

    The CDC continues to recommend the wearing of masks. I would like to think that common sense and/or courtesy would be enough for folks to follow that recommendation. But sadly it’s in short supply.

  14. - The Doc - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 2:11 pm:

    ==perhaps more people would be encouraged to get the vaccine if they weren’t required to continue following the same restrictions that are required of the unvaccinated==

    I wish there was evidence that pointed in this direction, but it appears pretty clear that a vaccine mandate as a condition of employment is the only real incentive that moves the needle in a meaningful fashion.

  15. - JS Mill - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 2:15 pm:

    =So, I’m not quite sure where that conspiracy theory came from=

    Ummm, the short answer is the mind of Mry Flowers.

    I have followed her for many years as she regularly proposed some of the most ridiculous bills around. I am disappointed that she has a leadership role in the house and that will forever taint my opinion of the Illinois house democrats. Flowers has always been a bit of a loon. Maybe not as harmful or mean spirited as bailey et al, but a loon nonetheless.

  16. - thechampaignlife - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 2:49 pm:

    Rep. Flowers’ ridiculous statement should be all that is needed for her to term limit herself. Sadly, that will likely not happen, and the FB misinformation train will keep on chugging.

    === CPS enrollment continues to plummet===

    Strange how parents seem to want to protect their (unable to be vaccinated) kids by homeschooling. It is almost like workers who do not want to go back to customer facing jobs at minimum wage for uncaring employers during a pandemic.

  17. - Michelle Flaherty - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 3:00 pm:

    Fluoridation is stealing our essence, Rich.

  18. - thisjustinagain - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 3:33 pm:

    I believe Rep. Flowers has been using crack after reading her obviously way-incorrect comment. I mean, seriously?? What’s next, the microchips?

  19. - zatoichi - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 4:16 pm:

    It would be nice for Flowers to specifically cite the scientific, peer reviewed study where she got that info.

  20. - NonAFSCMEStateEmployeeFromChatham - Wednesday, Oct 27, 21 @ 4:27 pm:

    Could many of us require a 4th COVID shot?

    I’ve got the booster three weeks ago and when it’s offered, I will definitely get the 4th.

    I assume eventually, perhaps as early as next year, the COVID vaccine formula will be incorporated into the annual flu vaccine.

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