Video: Dr. Allison Arwady, commissioner of Chicago’s Department of Public Health joins “Chicago Tonight” to discuss Illinois' COVID-19 cases climbing, the new variant being in the U.S., and the beginning of holiday travel. (Produced by Blair Paddock)
The number of new COVID-19 infections has been steadily increasing for weeks and on Thursday surpassed 11,000 for the first time in a 24-hour period since December 2020 – when vaccines weren’t available, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.
The 11,524 new confirmed and probable cases of the virus mark the first time a single-day total has surpassed 11,000 since Dec. 10, 2020 when the state reported 11,101 cases.
While the jump in cases comes amid concerns about the omicron variant, it hasn’t yet been detected in Illinois. According to state data, the delta variant is the predominant variant circulating in the state.
Thursday’s cases mark the highest single-day total since Dec. 1, 2020 when the state reported 12,542 cases.
Officials also reported 40 deaths Thursday.
More than 7.4 million Illinois residents, or 58% of the state’s population, are fully vaccinated, according to state vaccine data. Of those eligible to be vaccinated (residents ages 5 and up), nearly 66% are fully vaccinated, according to IDPH data.
More than 1.8 million people have been infected with COVID-19 and 26,499 have died since the pandemic began, according to state health officials.
The seven-day statewide test positivity rate is now 5.7%, according to IDPH data.
Nearly all of Illinois’ 102 counties are experiencing high transmission of COVID-19, defined by IDPH as areas with more than 100 cases per 100,000 people over a seven-day period. Only far southern Alexander County is experiencing moderate transmission of the virus, defined as an area with 10 to 50 cases per 100,000 people over a seven-day period.
In Cook County, the average seven-day case rate per 100,000 people is 176.71, according to state data.
Chicago is now recording 457 cases per day based on a seven-day average, according to Chicago Department of Public Health data. In the past week, the number of cases has decreased 26%, according to city data.
The city’s COVID-19 test positivity rate is now 3.6%, up from 3% a week ago.