COVID-19 ICU hospitalizations drop 34% from last week

ICU hospitalizations for COVID-19 are down by more than a third from last week.

State health officials today reported 951 COVID-19 patients were being treated in Illinois hospitals, down 22.8%% from a week ago.

Of those hospitalized, 165 are in intensive care. That's 34% less than a week ago, according to Illinois Department of Public Health records.

IDPH officials are also reporting 45 more COVID-19 deaths, as well as 1,640 new cases diagnosed.

The state's COVID-19 death toll is now at 32,848, while 3,034,701 infections have been recorded since the outset of the pandemic.

The seven-day case positivity rate in Illinois is now at 1.6%. That's down from 1.9% a week ago. Case positivity is the percentage of tests results that render a new case of the virus.

Public health officials have started moving away from this metric as an indicator of how widespread the virus is because of all the home tests being administered and those results not being reported to health agencies.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently updated its guidance for monitoring community spread by focusing on hospitalizations in counties rather than caseloads to determine necessary mitigation factors.

The CDC is reporting 67.5% of Illinois' roughly 12.7 million residents are fully vaccinated. Of those, 49.2% have received a booster dose.

IDPH records show another 14,390 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered throughout the state.

Vaccine providers in Illinois have now administered 21,133,040 doses since December 2020.

IDPH officials are also warning residents to discard any at-home COVID-19 testing kits marked “Celltrion USA Inc. DiaTrust COVID-19 Ag Rapid Tests.”

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued an alert Tuesday about the testing kits noting that the tests have “not been authorized, cleared or approved by the FDA for distribution or use in the United States.”

There have been no reports of “injuries or adverse health consequences,” the alert stated. The FDA is concerned the tests give false results.

The test kits come in a green and white package.

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