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20 Illinois counties at COVID-19 ‘warning level’

IL coronavirus

SPRINGFIELD (WSIL) -- The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) says 20 counties in the state are now at a "warning level" for COVID-19.

According to IDPH, a county enters a warning level when it experiences an increase in two or more risk indicators from the state’s COVID-19 Resurgence Mitigation plan.

The 20 counties at a warning level on Friday were:

  • Bureau
  • Cass
  • Clay
  • Clinton
  • Franklin
  • Greene
  • Grundy
  • Hancock
  • Henderson
  • Jefferson
  • Logan
  • Madison
  • Monroe
  • Moultrie
  • Randolph
  • St. Clair
  • Union
  • White
  • Will
  • Williamson

This is the second week in a row that Franklin and Jefferson counties have appeared on the IDPH's warning level list. It's the third week in a row for Union County.

"These counties saw cases or outbreaks associated with weddings, businesses, neighborhood gatherings, parties, long-term care facilities and other congregate settings, travel to neighboring states, bars, sports camps, and spread among members of the same household who are not isolating at home. Cases connected to schools are also beginning to be reported.
Public health officials are observing people not social distancing or using face coverings. Additionally, there are reports of individuals who are ill attributing their symptoms to allergies or other illnesses, or not being forthcoming about their symptoms or close contacts," said a release Friday from the Illinois Department of Public Health.

IDPH uses several factors when deciding if a county has stable COVID-19 activity or if there are warning signs of increased risk.

• New cases per 100,000 people. If there are more than 50 new cases per 100,000 people in the county, this triggers a warning.
• Number of deaths. This metric indicates a warning when the weekly number of deaths increases more than 20% for two consecutive weeks.
• Weekly test positivity. This metric indicates a warning when the 7-day test positivity rate rises above 8%.
• ICU availability. If there are fewer than 20% of intensive care units available in the region, this triggers a warning.
• Weekly emergency department visits. This metric indicates a warning when the weekly percent of COVID-19-like-illness emergency department visits increase by more than 20% for two consecutive weeks.
• Weekly hospital admissions. A warning is triggered when the weekly number of hospital admissions for COVID-19-like-illness increases by more than 20% for two consecutive weeks.
• Tests perform. This metric is used to provide context and indicate if more testing is needed in the county.
• Clusters. This metric looks at the percent of COVID-19 cases associated with clusters or outbreaks and is used to understand large increase in cases.

A map and information on each county’s status can be found on the IDPH website at dph.illinois.gov/countymetrics.

On Friday, IDPH announced 2,208 new cases of COVID-19, including 24 additional confirmed deaths.

Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 215,929 cases, including 7,857 deaths, in Illinois.

The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases for August 14 – August 20 is 4.3%.

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