COVID-19 cases grow statewide, as positivity rates rise
Illinois' COVID-19 cases grew at a higher rate this week, and test positivity rates are rising in some areas as well.
At the same time vaccines are being made available to children age 5-11, vaccination rates are still leveling off, leaving many unvaccinated people vulnerable to serious complications from the virus.
With 22,600 new cases this week, Illinois added 5,000 more new cases than last week's 17,462 total. Last week was the first increase in new cases statewide in nearly a month.
In this region, 978 new cases were reported - up nearly 250 cases over last week. Local hospitalizations are up, too - eight more patients in SIH hospitals, and one more in SSM's facilities in southern Illinois. The vast majority of people hospitalized are in the unvaccinated category - at a rate of 70%-80%.
Health leaders continue to recommend masking and distancing, in addition to the vaccine - numerous clinics are planned in the coming weeks to allow people to receive their first, second, or even third doses of vaccine.