COVID-19 Illinois: Coronavirus pandemic takes a toll on businesses statewide

ByKay Cesinger WLS logo
Sunday, November 8, 2020

Illinois continues to report record numbers of new COVID-19 cases, causing difficulties for hospitals and businesses.

More than 10,000 people in Illinois have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic began. Gov. JB Pritzker called the rise in cases and hospitalizations "unsustainable."

"I cannot stress enough the severity of our situation," Pritzker said Thursday.

Every region across Illinois is under resurgence mitigations, and more could be coming.

Dr. Kiran Joshi, the senior medical officer and co-lead at the Cook County Department of Public Health, and Todd Maisch, the resident and CEO of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, spoke with ABC 7 Chicago about the rising cases and the impact this pandemic is having on hospitals and businesses.


Strides were made at expanding testing capacity, but a massive surge is stressing the system, according to Dr. Joshi.

The continued spread of COVID-19 has led to increasing visits to emergency rooms and an increasing number of hospital admissions, Joshi said. This translates to increasing number of patients in hospital beds, including in the ICU. However, the proportion of severely ill patients is not the same this time around, Joshi added.

Illinois Chamber of Commerce board members, including small and large businesses, recognize the public health crisis is causing an economic crisis, but they want the Illinois government to handle both situations at once, Maisch said.


Illinois leads the nation in new jobless claims, according to Maisch.

"If they can't do two things at one time, they're really failing," Maisch said.