CHICAGO (AP) – The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) announced Thursday the deaths of three people in Illinois with COVID-19 and 134 new cases across the state.
The individuals include a Will County resident in his 50s and a Cook County resident in her 80s, and an out-of-state resident in her 70s who was in Sangamon County. A total of four have died in Illinois due to the virus.
Five additional counties are now reporting cases; Jackson, Kankakee, LaSalle, Washington, and Williamson counties.
Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 422 cases in 22 counties in Illinois. The number of COVID-19 cases being reported is rising quickly, partly because of the increase in testing by commercial and hospital laboratories.
With testing becoming more available, IDPH will prioritize testing for the most vulnerable populations, such as those who work or live in nursing homes and other congregate facilities. Once a case in these locations is confirmed per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance, testing of all residents and staff without symptoms is not recommended. However, they recommend all precautions to prevent additional spread and staff and residents should be closely monitored for respiratory illness.
According to the organization, the growing number of cases also reflects a rapid spread of disease across communities.They said while the numbers are concerning, they’re not unexpected and the more robust information will allow them to better understand and track the size and scope of the outbreak, plus strengthen prevention and response efforts.