Illinois’ COVID-19 Testing Positivity Rate Takes Another Small Dip

New statewide totals: 92,457 cases, 4,129 deaths

The drive-thru testing facility at 6959 Forest Preserve Drive in Chicago. (WTTW News)The drive-thru testing facility at 6959 Forest Preserve Drive in Chicago. (WTTW News)

Illinois saw its coronavirus caseload increase Saturday by 2,088, but the percentage of positive cases among those tested, known as the “positivity rate,” fell to 15% statewide, down a percentage point from a day earlier.

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In the northeastern part of the state, encompassing Cook and collar counties, that rate is 18.8% – still below the 20% benchmark a region must remain at or below for at least 14 days in order to move to the next phase of reopening, according to Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s “Restore Illinois” plan.

The rise in coronavirus cases comes as Illinois continues to carry out more tests. Labs ran tests on 23,047 specimens within the past 24 hours, according to state health leaders.

The virus has now spread to all but two of Illinois’ counties – Scott, near the western border of Missouri, and Edgar to the east, bordering Indiana.

For the first time, Putnam County, in the Ottawa-Peru metropolitan area, on Saturday saw confirmed cases of COVID-19. It now has two.

The Illinois Department of Public Health reported that 74 people died between Friday and Saturday after testing positive for COVID-19.

The state’s total number of coronavirus cases now stands at 92,457 along with 4,129 deaths.

A third resident of the state-run Manteno Veterans’ Home is among the latest fatalities, the facility’s third linked to the coronavirus.

There have also been outbreaks at the state veterans’ homes in Kankakee and Anna. According to a database from Veterans Affairs, there are currently 192 active cases of patients tested or treated at Illinois VA facilities, and 32 deaths.

Follow Amanda Vinicky on Twitter: @AmandaVinicky

Coronavirus Prevention Tips and Resources

Officials advise taking preventive measures to slow the spread of the virus, including: 

—Washing your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water
—Using hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol
—Sneezing or coughing into a tissue and then disposing of the tissue
—Limiting contact with people regardless of how you feel
—Staying home when you are sick

Symptoms of COVID-19 include, but are not limited to:

—New onset of fever, cough, shortness of breath
—Congestion in the nasal sinuses or lungs
—Sore throat, body aches or unusual fatigue

If you think you have COVID-19:

Call your doctor before showing up at their office. If you have a medical emergency and need to call 911, tell the operator that you think you have COVID-19. If possible, wear a mask before medical help arrives or presenting at a doctor’s office. More advice for those who think they have COVID-19.

Additional resources:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Illinois’ COVID-19 website
Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) website
—IDPH COVID-19 hotline: 800-889-3931
—IDPH COVID-19 email link
City of Chicago COVID-19 website
—City of Chicago COVID-19 hotline: 312-746-4835
—City of Chicago COVID-19 email link

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