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For the third day in a row Illinois set a record for the number of people getting vaccinated. The ramp-up came as the state reallocates vaccine from areas of lower demand, to regions like the collar counties where demand is high. The governor made it clear the state is not stockpiling reserves.
"There's no rainy day fund for the vaccinations, if we can push it into someone's arm we're going to do that right away. We are using as much vaccine as we possibly can," Gov. JB Pritzker said.
But the governor conceded that in some areas, organizations working with local health departments could be holding on to doses.
"Sometimes those partners keep a few more vaccines on the shelf than they should. And so we just want everybody to push those out," Pritzker said.
There have been 1,276,830 total COVID cases, including 21,489 deaths in the state.
As of Friday night, 1,831 patients in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 381 patients were in the ICU and 178 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.
Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have reported testing 84,478 specimens for a total of 21,102,407 since the pandemic began.
The preliminary seven-day statewide test positivity from April 3-9, is 4.7%.
In Chicago, Mayor Lori Lightfoot said 1.5 million doses of COVID vaccine have now been given out, with efforts specifically focusing on vulnerable communities. Beginning Saturday morning, the former Treasure Island grocery store on Wells near Lincoln Park will serve as a vaccination site, giving out another 1,000 doses.
The site will offer full inoculation through the Johnson & Johnson vaccine before shipments of the single-dose shot drop next week.
"Doing it with the Johnson & Johnson tomorrow and taking care of it in one day makes it a lot easier on us," Hopkins said.
As other states like California set dates to fully reopen, Pritzker is unwilling to commit.
"And I have never been able to give an answer because this virus is so unpredictable, but we are heading in the right direction," Pritzker said.
In order to move into phase five, 50% of those 16 and older must be vaccinated with at least the first shot, the current number is now over 43%, but it could rise more quickly starting next week as eligibility expands.
And the additional vaccinations could help turn around the current upward trend of cases and hospitalizations, which need to be stable before the state can fully reopen.
A total of 9,001,105 doses of vaccine have been delivered to providers in Illinois, including Chicago.
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A total of 7,047,326 vaccines have been administered in Illinois as of Friday night. The seven-day rolling average of vaccines administered daily is 122,674 doses. There were 175,681 doses reported administered in Illinois Friday, a new record.
On Monday, April 12, all residents 16 and older will be eligible to get a vaccine in Illinois. Chicago will wait until April 19 to expand eligibility. Chicago residents are eligible to get vaccinated at suburban sites.
The Lake County mass vaccination site in Grayslake is also changing its format starting Monday. The Lake County Illinois Fairground site will become a walk-through vaccination location instead of a drive-thru.
The county's health department said this will allow them to administer 2,500 shots per day instead of 1,500. Masks and social distancing are required inside the building.
COVID vaccine appointments at Gary mass vaccination site open to Illinois, Chicago residents
With Chicago COVID vaccine appointments in short supply, many city-dwellers are heading into Northwest Indiana to get their shots at the FEMA site in Gary.
Many Chicagoans have been searching for a vaccination appointment for weeks. This week, top health officials in Illinois also pushed residents to drive to find a dose.
Because the Gary mass vaccination site is run by FEMA, you do not have to be an Indiana resident to get an appointment. You can schedule an appointment by clicking here or calling 866-211-9966 if you do not have access to a computer or need assistance.
The deaths reported Saturday include:
- Cook County: 1 male 40s, 2 males 50s, 1 male 70s, 1 female 90s
- Jo Daviess County: 1 female 80s
- Kankakee County: 1 male 70s
- LaSalle County: 1 female 70s
- McLean County: 1 male 60s
- Tazewell County: 1 male 70s, 1 male 90s
- Will County: 1 female 90s
- Woodford County: 1 male 70s
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