Mitigations Lifted for Three Illinois Regions

Illinois Regions moving to Tier 2
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In his COVID-19 update press conference today, Governor Pritzker announced that regions across the state that have met the criteria will be able to move from Tier 3 mitigations into Tier 2 effective immediately.

Three Regions Move to Tier 2

In order for a region to move back to Tier 2 mitigations, a region must experience less than 12 percent test positivity rate for three consecutive days AND greater than 20 percent available intensive care unit and hospital bed availability AND declining COVID hospitalizations in 7 out of the last 10 days.

The first three regions to move on to Tier 2 are regions 1, 2, and 5.

Region 7 which is made up of Kankakee and Will counties and region 8 which includes Kane and DuPage counties, will likely meet the criteria in the next few days.

Currently, region 8 has recorded 11 consecutive days under the 12% threshold, with a current 7-day rolling positivity rate average of 9.8%. The region also has 11 straight days of over 20% ICU bed availability.  There have been declining hospitalizations in nine of the last 10 days. What is holding the region back is two consecutive days of hospital bed availability under 20%.

Region 7, which contains parts of southeast Naperville, has declining COVID hospitalizations in only 6 of the last 10 days. However, the ICU bed availability and hospital bed availability have been over 20% for 11 consecutive days. The positivity rate for the region sits at 9.7% according to the most recent data.

Tier 2 Restrictions

Organized group recreational activities, including sports and fitness center operations, are allowed to resume but are limited to 25% capacity or 25 people or less.

Video gaming machine operations as well as gambling at casinos are able to resume in Tier 2.

Under Tier 2, there still is no indoor service at bars or restaurants, social events and gatherings, including weddings, funerals and potlucks.

Indoor Dining Can Return in Tier 1

In order to move to Tier 1 mitigations, a region must have a positivity rate below 8 percent for three consecutive days, as measured by the 7-day rolling average AND greater than or equal to 20 percent available staffed ICU and medical/surgical hospital beds for three consecutive days, on a 3-day rolling average AND no sustained increase in the number of people in the hospital with COVID-19 for seven out of 10 days, on a 7-day average.
Restaurants and bars in Regions in Tier 1 can open indoor dining with capacity limited to the lesser of 25 people or 25% of room capacity. Additionally, establishments must serve food and indoor tables must be limited to no more than four people, with reservations limited to two hours.
In order to move back out of Tier I mitigations into Phase 4, a region must have a positivity rate below 6.5% for three consecutive days.

Increased Vaccine Distribution

Illinois is currently in Phase 1A of the state’s vaccination distribution plan, which includes health care workers and long term care facility residents and staff.

Beginning Monday, January 25th, the Illinois Department of Public Health will permit local health departments who have already substantially completed their 1A populations to move forward with Phase 1B in order to leave no vaccine on the shelves.

Phase 1B will also include front line essential workers, who are classified as those whose work duties can’t be done remotely. It will also include residents from the age of 65 to 74.

While vaccine shipments from the federal government remains limited, the state is aggressively building out its capacity to prepare, with hundreds of additional pharmacy sites coming online starting Monday and the Illinois National Guard deploying to support local health department vaccination sites starting Tuesday, both initially only available to the 1A population.

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