Illinois outpacing national vaccination rate for younger children
Illinois children ages 5 to 11 are receiving their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a faster pace than most kids their age across the country.
So far, Illinois Department of Public Health officials say nearly 11.6% of children ages 5 to 11 have received their first dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.
Meanwhile, White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator Jeff Zients said that by the end of Wednesday, 10% of the nation's children in that age group will have received their first shots. That amounts to roughly 2.6 million American children.
"For perspective, it took about 50 days for us to reach 10% of adults with one shot," Zients said at a briefing Wednesday. "And when the polio vaccine was first rolled out for kids in the 1950s, it took about three months to cross 2.5 million shots in arms."
IDPH also updated its vaccination figures for each county. Lake County now leads the state with 18.3% of children ages 5 to 11 receiving their first dose of the vaccine.
DuPage County, which a day ago was reporting only 1.9% of kids in that age group have had a shot, now reports 15.3% have received a dose, the sixth-highest rate among the 102 counties and Chicago, according to IDPH data.
Elsewhere in the suburbs, 13.4% of kids ages 5 to 11 in suburban Cook County have received one dose, 11.1% in McHenry County, 9.4% in Will County and 8.7% in Kane County.
In all, 68,144 more doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered throughout Illinois, IDPH officials reported Wednesday.
Since the vaccine became available nearly a year ago, Illinois providers have now administered 16,553,367 doses.
IDPH officials report more than 57.3% of the state's 12.7 million residents are now fully vaccinated.
IDPH officials also reported 1,609 COVID-19 patients were being treated in hospitals throughout Illinois, down 18 from Tuesday.
Of those hospitalized, 325 were in intensive care, according to Illinois Department of Public Health figures.
IDPH officials also reported 23 more COVID-19 deaths, as well as 4,989 new cases.
That brings the state's death toll from the respiratory disease to 26,160, while 1,752,502 cases have been diagnosed in Illinois throughout the pandemic.
The state's seven-day case positivity rate is at 2.9%, up slightly from Tuesday.
Case positivity is the percentage of test results that show a new infection, and a seven-day average is used to account for any anomalies in the daily reporting of those figures.