“Things are getting worse,” Pritzker says, Region 7 could see additional mitigations Tuesday

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BOURBONNAIS – New mitigations could be headed to Region 7 after the area tested above the state’s 8.0% warning level for the second day in a row.

“Things are getting worse,” Gov. Pritzker said of COVID-19 spread Monday. “Both Regions 7 and 8 have surpassed a rolling average of 8% and could join Region 5 in the metrics for heightened mitigations as early as tomorrow.”

On Monday, Region 7’s seven-day positivity was 8.3%. It comes a day after the region which includes Kankakee and Will counties reported a 1.5% jump to 8.2%. The jump was the largest single day hike in the seven-day positivity percentage since the Illinois Department of Public Health began reporting the data in June.

The information came as Illinois announced it would resume daily COVID-19 updates beginning today for the first time since Summer. “Dr. Ezike and I will resume these daily COVID-19 briefings on a daily basis, every weekday until Illinois returns to a better standing in our COVID metrics.” Gov. Pritzker announced Monday.

“In recent weeks, we’ve watched admissions to our COVID units climb.” Dr. Craig T. Davis with SIH Medical Group told reporters Monday afternoon.  “When we put these statements together a couple of days ago, we wrote they had doubled.  In fact they’ve tripled over the last couple of days, just dramatically rising.”

Last Thursday, Region 7, which includes Kankakee and Will counties, reported it’s largest single day testing with over 4,022 residents tested in a 24-hour stretch. Ten percent of those tested (401) reporting positive.

“As a Region has reached this greater than 8% positivity rate, and now plus two days consistently so, it’s a time to look inward.  What remains most alarming to me as a physician and father is the complacency I see in some of our community members and the polarization over simple protections methods.  Especially surrounding masks and  social distancing.” Dr. Davis said Monday afternoon.  “I understand the mental, physical, social fatigues that we’re all dealing with.  Our daily lives have been totally upended by this.  I understand everyone has a urging to return to normalcy.  But I urge everyone to stay the course.”

Additional mitigation measures could be announced for Region 7 as early as Tuesday. The Region has already seen the measures put into place back in late August through mid-September. Those mitigations included temporary closure of indoor dining and indoor bar services and  reduction of group gatherings to 25 people or less.

Tuesday afternoon IDPH reported 3,113 new confrmed cases of COVID-19, including 22 deaths. IDPH has reported a total of 347,161 cases, including 9,236 deaths, in 102 counties in Illinois since the pandemic began.

As of Monday, the state’s seven-day positivity was 5.4%.

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