SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois Department of Public Health announced 766 new confirmed cases of coronavirus disease Thursday, along with 91 additional deaths.
The new cases were a slight uptick from the number announced Wednesday, but the number was still far off the highs of April and May and represented the sixth straight day of fewer than 1,000 new cases. The low count comes despite a continued high volume of completed tests, with 22,325 test results reported Thursday.
That made for a one-day positivity rate of 3.4%, while the preliminary seven-day statewide positivity rate from June 4-10 is 4%.
IDPH has reported a total of 130,603 cases in Illinois in 101 counties, including 6,185 deaths since the pandemic began. There have been more than 1.1 million tests completed.
The numbers for persons hospitalized due to COVID-19 as of midnight Thursday were all at their lowest amounts since the state began reporting them daily on April 12. There were 2,365 hospital beds in use by COVID-19 patients. Of those, 638 were intensive care unit beds and there were 379 ventilators in use.
There have been fewer than 1,000 ICU beds in use each day since May 28, fewer than 3,000 total beds in use each day since June 3, and fewer than 500 ventilators in use each day since June 4.
The state is also now reporting “probable” cases of the virus separately on the IDPH website, per U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance.
“Reporting probable cases will help show the potential burden of COVID-19 illness and efficacy of population-based non-pharmaceutical interventions,” according to a press release from IDPH.
Those numbers are updated weekly by the IDPH, and currently there are 724 total probable cases and 178 total probable deaths as of June 8.
According to the CDC definition of a probable case, the patient must have certain symptoms or contact with positive COVID-19 cases.
For health questions about COVID-19, call the state’s hotline at 1-800-889-3931 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Capitol News Illinois is a nonprofit, nonpartisan news service covering state government and distributed to more than 400 newspapers statewide. It is funded primarily by the Illinois Press Foundation and the Robert R. McCormick Foundation.
Meet the 'Mask Committee,' making masks for Southern Illinois police, health care workers
Photos: Meet the 'Mask Committee,' making masks for Southern Illinois police, health care workers
On March 20, I made a mask for my husband, who is a health care worker, because there was a shortage of personal protective equipment, or PPE, at his workplace. Then, I made more masks for my elderly neighbors, elderly local people and local friends, as well as friends from New York and Florida. I was using leftover fabric I had in my workshop — holidays patterns like Christmas, Valentine’s Day and Fourth of July.
I was running out of material and then Calico Country Sew store in Carbondale started donating fabric. I picked up some yards, and I was able to make masks for the police officers from Carterville. But, that was it: I ran out of material, and Amazon wasn’t shipping until May. As soon as I announced on my Facebook page that I had run out of material, people started donating fabric, metal wire, machine needles and threads. With that donation, I was able to keep making more masks to donate, and I completed a group of masks for Herrin police officers.
Then, Dr. Amanda Brazis Cook from Southern Illinois Healthcare approached me asking if I can reuse operating room drapes to make masks. She brought the material to my house, and at that point, I realized I needed extra hands to mass produce masks for area health care workers.
I asked the president of Carterville Rotary Club to help me find ladies who know how to sew, and Mary Slider and Louise Humble joined the effort. I also asked the president of my Woman’s Club in Herrin, and she was able to help me find three more ladies: Patty Cox, Carla Shasteen and Tienne Kollar, all of Herrin.
Another doctor joined the team: Dr. Danielle Tomevi brought material and also found a lady to help us, Dorene from Murphysboro.
And that is how the mask committee was formed. We named it "Mask Committee: Keep Calm and Sew."
After that, Joni, a nurse at Herrin Hospital, joined the committee, too, then Mary Russell, one of the managers from Dillards, Nancy, one of my neighbors, and Mirna from Murphysboro.
We have been sewing our hearts out since March. April was the busiest month for us. We have made hundreds of masks to donate.
Then, we had a request of a new pattern and we had to divide the committee in two to work the requested pattern. Dr. Sara Altamimi provided us with more OR drapes to use, and we have been working making two different masks for area health care workers.
Ninety-five percent of the masks have been donated to SIH, and 5% to community members and police officers. We have received several selfies of health care workers wearing the masks in different departments. It really made us happy that we can give back and help the community in time of need.
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