Illinois reports 2,056 new coronavirus cases, 25 related deaths


CHICAGO — Illinois health officials said 2,056 new cases of COVID-19 and 25 additional coronavirus-related deaths have been confirmed over the past day Thursday.

According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, the COVID-19 test positivity rate from September 10-16 came in at 3.6 percent, after a recent decline brought the rate to levels near those seen in late July.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker said on Wednesday that the positivity rate in most regions across Illinois has been stable or declining over the past two weeks.

While the positivity rate reported Thursday is equal to the rate on July 25, the weekly testing average over that time rose from around 37,000 to near 49,000 as of Thursday, data compiled by WGN-TV shows. State officials said 57,800 new COVID-19 tests were reported over the past 24 hours.

Additional mitigation measures in the South Suburban region including Will and Kankakee counties could be lifted as early as Saturday if the 7-day positivity rate there stays below 6.5 percent.

Additional restrictions were put in place after the 7-day positivity rate there passed the state limit of 8 percent for three consecutive days. As of Sept. 14, the rate in the South Suburban region remains at 6.4 percent.

Added mitigation measures are also in place in the Metro East region outside St. Louis, where the 7-day positivity rate has been declining since Sept. 7 but remains above the state limit at 8.4 percent as of Monday.

Hospital resources and COVID-19 hospitalizations remain well within state guidelines as well, with 1,558 patients hospitalized with coronavirus as of Wednesday, including 359 in intensive care and 144 on ventilators. Health officials estimate 96 percent of confirmed cases have recovered to date.

According to the latest state data, 402 new cases of COVID-19 and no additional deaths were reported in Chicago over the past day, while the 7-day positivity rate as of Sept. 15 came in at 5 percent, equal to the target level set by the city.

Indiana health officials reported 850 new cases of COVID-19 and six related deaths have been confirmed over the past day Thursday, while the positivity rate from Sept. 4-10 came in at 4.5 percent.

On the national front, President Donald Trump suggested Wednesday that Republicans “go for the much higher numbers” on a coronavirus aid proposal, opening the door to the possibility of a package being approved before Nov. 3.

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