Portion of state hospitalizations from COVID-19 doubles in a month, 11,524 new cases Thursday

COVID-19 patients account for 8% of all hospital patients in Illinois, a jump from last month when only 4% of those hospitalized statewide were being treated for the respiratory disease.

COVID-19 patients haven't accounted for such a large percentage of those hospitalized in Illinois since late January, Illinois Department of Public Health figures show. But at this time last year, 17.3% of all hospitalizations in the state were from COVID-19.

Officials also reported 11,524 new cases diagnosed — the most new cases reported in a single day in 2021. The high number was tied to a record-setting spike in tests reported Thursday, with results likely delayed by the holiday weekend.

The state reported 231,876 test results Thursday, the most ever in a single day by roughly 50,000 tests.

“Thanksgiving was one week ago and we are starting to see cases associated with family gatherings and travel,” IDPH spokeswoman Melaney Arnold said.

Despite the large number of new cases diagnosed, that amounts to 5% of all tests resulting in a new case.

“There may be lags in reporting by laboratories over the long holiday weekend, and we could see those results being reported now,” Arnold said.

IDPH data released Thursday show 2,537 COVID-19 patients were being treated in hospitals throughout Illinois. That's 27.4% more than just a week ago.

Of those hospitalized, 505 are in intensive care. That's almost 20% of all COVID-19 patients and the most needing an ICU bed since mid-September.

The state reported 40 more COVID-19 deaths Thursday. The death toll from the virus is now at 26,499, while 1,827,518 infections have been recorded since the outset of the pandemic.

The state's seven-day case positivity rate is now at 4.7%, up from 4.4% Wednesday.

Case positivity is the percentage of test results that show a new infection. A seven-day average is used to account for any anomalies in the daily reporting of those figures.

IDPH officials also reported another 51,226 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered statewide.

Since becoming available nearly a year ago, Illinois vaccine providers have administered 17,408,457 doses.

IDPH figures show 58.2% of the state's 12.7 million residents are now fully vaccinated, including 33,107 children between the ages of 5 and 11, who only became eligible for the vaccine last month.

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