Number of new coronavirus deaths across state drops to 33
State officials on Sunday reported 33 new deaths from the COVID-19 virus, sharply below the 125 reported a day earlier.
The one-day increase brings the total death toll from the virus to 1,290 across Illinois since the pandemic began, officials announced during Gov. J.B. Pritzker's daily briefing.
During the news conference, Pritzker also announced that the state is about to receive another shipment of personal protective equipment (PPE) and said he is considering ordering the use of masks.
Officials on Sunday also reported 1,197 more cases of COVID-19, bringing the total statewide to 30,357.
Those whose deaths were announced Sunday include:
• Cook County: 1 male 40s, 1 female 60s, 5 males 60s, 4 females 80s, 2 males 80s, 2 females 90s, 3 males 90s, 1 unknown 90s
• DuPage County: 1 female 80s, 1 male 80s, 1 male 90s
• Kane County: 1 female 90s
• Will County: 1 female 50s, 1 male 60s, 2 females 80s, 1 male 80s, 1 female 90s.
• Madison County: 1 male 50s
• Monroe County: 1 female 90s
• Sangamon County: 1 male 90s
• St. Clair County: 1 male 60s
Pritzker said the additional shipment of PPE from China will arrive Monday by airlift. It follows on the heels of the first shipment delivered earlier in the week.
The Illinois National Guard will handle logistics on the ground. The equipment, including masks and gloves, will be taken to a state warehouse to be checked for performance and quality.
"If it strikes you as atypical that in the midst of a national emergency, a state is directly airlifting emergency response materials from another country, well, you'd be right," Pritzker said. "But that's the landscape that we're operating in, competing with other states, other countries and even our own federal government for supplies. So if an airlift is what it takes to bring the PPE to protect our nurses, our firefighters, our police officers and other essential workers, then it's an airlift that we'll use without hesitation."
Pritzker addressed those who are protesting the stay-at-home order, saying, "I want people to get back to work. I want people to go back to school. And I want us to have a great summer. So I'm looking for all the best ways to make that happen. But we're in the middle of an emergency, a pandemic, and it's like nothing that we have ever seen, at least, in our lifetimes."
To that end, he said, the state is listening to the experts and scientists, but he warned that "we have got to be very careful" as the state makes decisions about changing the stay-at-home order to keep people safe.
Pritzker said he is considering ordering the use of masks, which is now optional.
"It may be that the right answer is everybody wears a mask, no matter where they are outside, or perhaps everybody wears a mask if they know that they are going to be in an area with other people."
He said decisions will be made between now and April 30, when the stay-at-home order is set to expire.