COVID Illinois Update: IL reports 748 new cases, 0 deaths

BySarah Schulte and ABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Tuesday, March 29, 2022
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CHICAGO (WLS) -- Illinois reported 748 new COVID cases and 0 related deaths Monday as the state's positivity rate ticked up.

State public health officials also reported 615 new COVID cases on Sunday, and 1,148 new cases on Saturday. There 21 related deaths reported on Saturday and no deaths reported Sunday.

IDPH notes that "daily deaths reported on weekends and at the beginning of the week may be low as IDPH and local health departments move away from reviewing and processing COVID-19 death records over the weekend. Those deaths will be captured in subsequent days."

There have been at least 3,063,735 total COVID cases, including at least 33,328 related deaths in the state since the pandemic began.

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The seven-day statewide test positivity rate is 1.7%, up from 1.6% on Friday.

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Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have reported testing 33,847 new specimens for a total of 57,078,327 since the pandemic began.

As of Sunday night, 461 patients in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 59 patients were in the ICU, and 31 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

A total of 21,333,503 vaccine doses have been administered in Illinois as of Sunday, and 64.3% of the state's population is fully vaccinated. The seven-day rolling average of vaccines administered daily is 7,107.

The Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize a second Pfizer or Moderna booster for anyone aged 50 or older, which should come four months after the third dose.

"The fourth dose actually restored immunity that people get with the third dose, and we know the third dose is really effective at preventing infection, and keeping you out of the hospital," said Dr. Gregory Huhn, Cook County Health COVID vaccine coordinator.

While the FDA is likely to approve another booster, the CDC does not plan to formally recommend a fourth shot. Instead, the agency is expected to let people know another dose is available if they want one.

Infectious disease experts say while the CDC waits for more data, there is solid evidence immunity wanes over time. Still, a fourth shot could be a tough sell. COVID and vaccine fatigue is affecting booster rates. While the extra shot has been widely available for months, just under 45% of Americans and 50% of Illinoisans have gotten it.

Doctors say the new BA2 subvariant of COVID is a good reason to get the extra protection, as is the unknowns about long COVID.