(WSIL) -- Southern Seven Health Department (S7HD) reports the Illinois Department of Public Health announced on July 30th that Alexander County has moved into an Orange Warning Level status for COVID-19.
That county now joins Massac, Union, Johnson, and Pulaski Counties remain at the Orange Warning Level. Jackson, Franklin, Jefferson, Williamson, Perry, Hamilton, Gallatin and White Counties are also at warning level.
The only counties in southern Illinois NOT at warning level are Pope and Hardin.
The amount of New Cases Per 100,000 people, Test Positivity Percentage metrics, and falling ICU bed availability at area hospitals are causing the elevated risk levels. According to Illinois Department of Public Health, an orange designation indicates warning signs of increased COVID-19 risk in the community.
- Alexander County had 9 positive cases per 100,000 reported. The test positivity percentage for the county was 10.8% out of 111 tests. ICU availability was 16.7%
“Our ICU bed availability in the region dropped by another percentage point this week and new cases of COVID-19 are continuing to explode,” said Nathan Ryder, Outreach Coordinator for Southern Seven’s Contact Tracing Team. “Now more than ever, southern Illinoisans need to take some extra steps to get these infection rates to turn around before our region heads back to school.”
S7HD has been urging southern Illinoisans to get vaccinated against COVID-19, especially with the rapid spread of the Delta variant impacting neighboring states. The COVID vaccines are proving to be effective in preventing people from becoming severely ill or requiring hospitalization. It’s also recommended to continue following the COVID-19 mitigation procedures we’re all familiar with to help prevent the spread of COVID-19: wear a mask in public indoor settings, wash your hands frequently, and keep your distance especially in crowded situations or indoor environments.