Chicago Travel Advisory, Lightfoot Warns of Rising Cases – NBC Chicago


Chicago has updated its travel advisory, adding three more states back to the list advising anyone entering the city from those areas to test negative for COVID-19 or quarantine upon arrival.

Meanwhile, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker warned Tuesday that stricter mitigations could return for areas seeing a rise in COVID cases.

Here’s what you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic across Illinois today:

‘Sounding the Alarm’: Chicago Mayor Warns of Rise in COVID Cases Due to Delta Variant

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said she was “sounding the alarm” Tuesday due to a recent uptick in coronavirus cases across the city.

Citing a rise in both average daily cases and test positivity in Chicago largely attributed to the delta variant, Lightfoot said that while numbers are still well below the spikes seen during the peak of the pandemic, “it’s still a concerning development that we want to not only stay ahead of, but to quash completely.”

“If we allow the virus to continue to linger here in Chicago we will likely see further mutations, some of which our current vaccines may not be able to protect against and have to reinforce some of the restrictions that have come to infamously define much of 2020, and part of 2021,” Lightfoot said during a coronavirus update alongside city health officials. “The reality is this scenario – the worst case – is entirely preventable, and that’s because we have three different vaccines readily available to all of our residents, which offer very good protection against delta, and other new variants.”

Gov. Pritzker on Rising COVID Cases: ‘If We Need to Take Stricter Mitigations We Will’

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker warned Tuesday that stricter mitigations could return for areas seeing a rise in COVID cases.

“I believe strongly that we will impose mitigations as it’s appropriate, where it’s appropriate,” Pritzker said in a one-on-one interview with NBC Chicago’s Mary Ann Ahern Tuesday.

Calling on anyone who is unvaccinated to get vaccinated, Pritzker said the state continues to monitor COVID metrics like positivity rate, case numbers and hospitalizations.

“It is always a difficult thing for me,” he said. “I wake up every morning and I look at those numbers and when they’re rising, you know, that’s a bad day, and I want to do whatever I can to mitigate that. So that’s included making sure testing is widely available, making sure that the vaccines are widely available, and I’ll continue to do that and if we need to take stricter mitigations we will.”

Chicago Officials Predict Delta Variant Will Become City’s Dominant COVID Strain by August

Chicago public health officials say that COVID-19 cases caused by the delta variant are rapidly increasing in the city, and that by next month the strain will likely be the dominant form of the virus in the city.

During a press availability on Tuesday, Dr. Allison Arwady, the commissioner of the Chicago Department of Public Health, said that the delta variant is causing approximately 44% of the COVID cases in the city, and that officials expect that the variant will surpass the 50% mark next month.

“One thing that we are seeing with the major surges (is that) it is being driven by the delta variant,” she said.

Chicago Travel Advisory: City Adds 3 More States Back to List as COVID Cases Rise

Chicago updated its travel advisory Tuesday, adding three more states – for a total of five states and one territory – back to the list advising anyone entering the city from those areas to test negative for COVID-19 or quarantine upon arrival.

Florida, Louisiana and Nevada, as well as the U.S. Virgin Islands were added to the advisory as all 50 states see a rise in coronavirus cases, the Chicago Department of Public Health said in a statement.

Last week, Missouri and Arkansas were both added to the travel advisory after several weeks with no states on the list. Both states remain on the advisory, which CDPH said would now be updated weekly moving forward.

Recent increases in COVID metrics pushed those newly added states over the threshold of 15 cases per day per 100,000 people to get onto the “orange” list. Any below that mark are on the “yellow” list, with public health officials still warning against non-essential travel.

CDPH shared the rates in each state on the list, as well as Illinois and Chicago, as of Tuesday and from the previous week:

State Rate per 100K Residents – 7/20/21 Rate per 100K Residents – 7/13/21
Missouri 33.8 21.2
Arkansas 27.4 19.2
Florida 23.4 12.7
Louisiana 20.9 12.3
Nevada 18.1 12.2
Illinois 3.8 2.6
City of Chicago 3.3 2.7

“Unvaccinated individuals traveling from the states or territories on the Orange list are advised – not required – to obtain a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 72 hours prior to arrival in Chicago or quarantine for a 10-day period upon arrival,” CDPH said. “Vaccinated individuals are exempt from the Advisory, which will be updated weekly going forward.”

Read more here.

Cook County Mass Vaccination Sites to Close

The three remaining mass COVID vaccination sites in suburban Cook County close this week as public health officials move to a more hyperlocal model to get shots in arms.

County officials say the sites have seen a sharp decline in attendance and therefore, the vaccination effort will move toward a model of meeting people where they congregate.

There have been more than 600,000 shots given at the Cook County mass vaccination sites. Providing more than 4,000 doses per day at their peak, the number has now fallen to fewer than 100.

The locations in Forest Park and Des Plaines closed Tuesday, while the site in south suburban Matteson is scheduled to close Wednesday.

With concerns about the more transmissible delta variant on the rise, vaccinations are not being halted, just shifted to a more hyperlocal strategy with clinics to be held at places like forest preserves, neighborhood festivals and back-to-school gatherings.

Upcoming events can be found on Cook County’s vaccine website here.

$100K Illinois Vaccine Lottery Winners Chosen, From Berwyn, Chicago, Joliet

Three winners were chosen Monday during the second $100,000 drawing of Illinois’ COVID vaccine lottery.

The winners, located in Berwyn, Chicago and Joliet, will be notified by the Illinois Department of Public Health by phone or email starting Monday afternoon. Each will be awarded a $100,000 cash prize.

“Illinoisans from those cities and counties should keep their phones on and check their emails regularly to find out if they’ve won,” IDPH said in a statement.

Health officials will call from 312-814-3524 and/or email from DPH.communications@illinois.gov.

Read more here.

Breakthrough COVID Cases in Illinois: What We Know

At least 151 people have died and more than 500 have been hospitalized in Illinois due to COVID-19 in “breakthrough” cases after they were fully vaccinated, according to state health officials.

What is a breakthrough COVID case, how common are they and how are they being tracked? Here’s what you should know.

COVID Vaccine Pop-Ups: Here’s Where to Get an Appointment in Chicago

Several new COVID-19 vaccination spots are popping up across Chicago as cases and hospitalizations are on the rise again.

All COVID vaccines are free of cost with no insurance or ID required, CDPH reminded. Residents over the age of 12 are eligible for the vaccine, according to federal guidance.

Here’s where to get a vaccine in Chicago this week:

Wednesday, July 21

  • CPS: Theodore Roosevelt High School: 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
  • Food Pantry – St. Kevin Catholic Church: 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
  • Vaccination Station (Vax Bus) – Atlas Senior Center: 10:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
  • After School Matters at Millennium Park: 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
  • CPS: Morrill Elementary School (Annex Building): 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Thursday, July 22

  • CPS: Michele Clark High School:  9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
  • After School Matters at Lutz Family Center: 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
  • Vaccination Station (Vax Bus)– Salvation Army: 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
  • Metra Station – 93rd Street: 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
  • Back Of The Yard Neighborhood Council: 4:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
  • Movies in the Park – Wentworth Park: 5:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • SWOP Chicago: 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Friday, July 23

  • North Austin Public Library: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
  • CTA Stop – Brown Line/Kimball: 3:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
  • CTA Stop – 35th/Archer Orange Line: 3:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

For those who cannot leave their homes, CDPH can provide in-home vaccinations. Appointments can be made by calling (312) 746-4835 or visit this website.

Coronavirus in Illinois: 4,449 New COVID Cases, 62 Deaths, 148K Vaccinations in the Past Week

Illinois health officials on Friday reported 4,449 new COVID-19 cases in the past week, along with 62 additional deaths and more than 148,000 new vaccine doses administered.

In all, 1,399,946 cases of coronavirus have been reported in the state since the pandemic began. The additional deaths reported this week bring the state to 23,357 confirmed COVID fatalities.

The state has administered 228,430 tests since last Friday, officials said, bringing the total to more than 26 million tests conducted during the pandemic.

The state’s seven-day positivity rate on all tests rose to 1.9% from 1.5% the week before, and the seven-day positivity rate on individuals tested rose from 1.7% to 2.3%, officials said.

Over the past seven days, a total of 148,520 doses of the coronavirus vaccine have been administered to Illinois residents. That brings the state’s average to 21,217 daily vaccination doses over the last week, both metrics an increase from the week before according to IDPH data.

State officials say more than 12.9 million vaccine doses have been administered in Illinois since vaccinations began in December. More than 57% of adult residents in the state are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, with 73% receiving at least one dose.

As of midnight, 476 patients are currently hospitalized due to COVID in the state. Of those patients, 94 are in intensive care units, and 28 are on ventilators.

Delta Variant: What to Know About the New Version of Coronavirus Sparking Concern

Concerns surrounding the delta coronavirus variant are rising in both Chicago and Illinois, but what is it about the new variant that has some worried?

Here’s an exhaustive list of what we know so far about the variant itself and what is being seen in Chicago and Illinois.



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