COVID-19 hospitalizations dip for first time since Dec. 24 as suburbs hit vaccination milestones

State health officials Friday reported 7,096 COVID-19 patients were being treated in hospitals throughout Illinois — two fewer patients than the day before.

It's the first time in since Christmas Eve that hospitals are treating fewer patients than the day prior.

Also, a number of vaccination milestones have been surpassed in the suburbs recently. To start, more than 60% of the population is now fully vaccinated among the six counties.

Of those hospitalized, 1,123 people were in intensive care, according to Illinois Department of Public Health records. That's four more ICU patients than reported a day before.

IDPH officials also reported 101 more COVID-19 deaths, as well as 42,903 new infections.

That brings the state's death toll from the virus to 28,361, while 2,382,437 infections have been diagnosed since the outset of the pandemic.

The state's seven-day case positivity rate is at 15.2%, up from 14.7% the day before. Case positivity is the percentage of test results that yield a new case of the respiratory disease, and a seven-day average is used to account for any anomalies in the daily reporting of those figures.

The seven-day case positivity rates in Kane, McHenry and Will counties are all above 20%, meaning one in every five tests returned this week resulted in the diagnosis of a new COVID-19 case.

The seven-day case positivity rate in suburban Cook County is at 16.3%, it's 18.7% in DuPage County, and it's 16.6% in Lake County, according to IDPH figures.

IDPH officials also reported 60,066 more doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered statewide.

Vaccine providers in Illinois now have administered 19,535,937 doses of the vaccine since December 2020.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report 64.7% of the state's 12.7 million residents now are fully vaccinated. Of those fully vaccinated, 40.4% have received a booster dose.

In the suburbs:

• DuPage County is reporting 71.2% of residents are fully vaccinated, the highest level in the state. Of those fully vaccinated, 46.6% have received a booster, according to IDPH figures. And 32.6% of children ages 5 to 11 in DuPage County now are fully vaccinated, also the highest rate in the state.

• In suburban Cook County, 67.3% of residents are fully vaccinated, second highest in the state. Of those fully vaccinated, 43.5% have gotten a booster dose. And nearly 25% of children 5 to 11 now are fully vaccinated as well.

• In Lake County, 64.9% of residents are fully vaccinated. Of the fully vaccinated there, 43.8% have received a booster. And 31.4% of children 5 to 11 now are fully vaccinated.

• Kane County is reporting 61.4% of its population is fully vaccinated, the lowest rate in the suburbs. Of those, 40.1% have received a booster dose. And 18.5% of children 5 to 11 are fully vaccinated.

• In McHenry County, 61.7% of the population is fully vaccinated. Of those, 42.5% have received a booster shot. And 20.2% of children 5 to 11 are fully vaccinated.

• Will County has 61.9% of its residents fully vaccinated. Of those, 40.8% have received a booster. And 19.2% of children 5 to 11 are fully vaccinated.

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