4,344 more fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in Illinois
Illinois health officials on Wednesday reported 4,344 more of the state's residents and workers are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 after receiving their second dose.
More than 302,000 additional doses also were delivered to Illinois providers Tuesday, one of the largest single-day increases the state has seen since the initial rollout in mid-December, according to state records.
Vaccine providers reported administering 29,008 more doses Tuesday as well.
To date, 537,740 vaccine doses have been administered throughout the state, fully inoculating 112,823 people, according to Illinois Department of Public Health figures.
As of Tuesday, providers have reported to the state's vaccine tracking system that 38.7% of the 1,388,200 doses allocated to Illinois providers have been administered to residents of long-term care facilities, hospital workers, medical professionals and other health care workers eligible in the first round of vaccinations.
IDPH officials note there can be a lag of up to 72 hours between the time a provider administers a vaccine dose and when it is entered into the tracking system.
Also Wednesday, Illinois recorded 107 more COVID-19 deaths and 4,822 new cases of the disease.
That brings the state's COVID-19 death toll to 18,398, with 1,081,354 people infected since the outbreak began.
There were 3,284 patients treated for the virus in hospitals throughout the state Tuesday, according to IDPH figures. Of those hospitalized, 722 were in intensive care.
The state's seven-day average case positivity rate stands at 5.5%, the lowest since exactly three months ago on Oct. 20. Case positivity allows health officials to track the level of viral spread throughout a particular population. A seven-day average is used to smooth out any anomalies in the daily reporting of new cases and test results.
While most of the suburbs and Chicago are under Tier 2 mitigation restrictions, Will County's Region 7, which it shares with Kankakee County, remains in the most restrictive Tier 3. However, Region 7 should be allowed to enter into Tier 1 as early as today, state officials said.
That region seemingly meets all the requirements to move to the much less restrictive mitigation plan that would allow restaurants and bars in those counties to begin serving indoors at 25% capacity or 25 guests maximum, whichever is less. Casinos and movie theaters also could reopen. Many organized athletic activities could resume, and capacity limits at many retail stores would be lifted as well.
Region 7 would be the first suburban region to move back to Tier 1.
The region's positivity rate has been below 8% for the three most recent reporting days. ICU bed availability at hospitals in the region hasn't fallen below 20% for three weeks. And there hasn't been a "sustained increase" in the average number of patients hospitalized there over the past 10 days. The region was averaging 150 hospitalized patients Jan. 11 and had declined to 146 by Tuesday, according to IDPH figures.
State officials argue that because its patient count didn't decline from 150 until Jan. 14, Region 7 won't qualify to move to Tier 1 until today at the earliest.