Illinois COVID-19 Update: IL reports 3,385 new cases, 50 deaths; Chicago, suburban counties move to Tier 2

IDPH announces changes to mitigation metrics, allowing several regions to relax restrictions

ByEric Horng and ABC 7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Monday, January 18, 2021
Chicago, suburban counties move to Tier 2 COVID mitigations
Moving from Tier 3 to Tier 2 allows for the reopening of movie theaters, casinos and museums - and bowling alleys.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Illinois health officials reported 3,385 new COVID-19 cases and 50 deaths Monday as the state announced changes that allow more regions to relax COVID-19 mitigations.

The total number of cases in Illinois now stands at 1,072,214, with a total of 18,258 deaths, since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Illinois is launching multiple health care staffing contracts to increase hospital staffing. With that, the Illinois Dept. of Public Health said Monday it is adjusting its mitigation metrics, allowing Regions 8, 9, 10 and 11 to move from the most restrictive Tier 3 to Tier 2.

Regions 8, 9, 10 and 11 include the city of Chicago, suburban Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake and McHenry counties. Moving from Tier 3 to Tier 2 allows for the reopening of movie theaters, casinos and museums. Group fitness classes can also take place.

Moving from Tier 3 to Tier 2 allows for the reopening of movie theaters, casinos and museums. Group fitness classes can also take place.

In other parts of the state, Regions 1 and 6 have met the metrics to move to Tier 1, and Regions 3 and 5 have met the metrics to return to Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan, IDPH said.

You can see a map of the Restore Illinois regions here and the differences between Illinois' COVID-19 mitigation tiers here.

Waveland Bowl is among several businesses that can now reopen in Tier 2.

"It's been very, very difficult for not only myself but for the 40 people who work for me," owner Gary Handler said. "We're not going to make any money, but that's secondary right now."

It comes as the state prepares to move to the next vaccination phase for people 65 and older, and many essential workers.

But days after Gov. JB Pritzker announced that Phase 1B would begin January 25, several county health departments said they're looking at a later start date.

"We're still at least a few weeks away from actually getting there with all the 1A personnel that do exist in Will County," said Steve Brandy, public information officer for the Will County Health Dept.

"This week, we will be ramping up a more robust registration system. It's not to necessarily sign up for an appointment yet," said Dr. Rachel Rubin, Cook County Public Health Dept.

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Questions remain about how the limited doses will be allocated among millions.

"What's the process going to be? Is it just hit-or-miss? Is it going to be lottery? Is it going to be first come, first serve?" wondered AARP Illinois State Director Bob Gallo.

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Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have reported 63,002 specimens for a total of 14,826,995.

As of Sunday night, 3,345 patients in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 705 patients were in the ICU and 392 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

The preliminary seven-day statewide test positivity from Jan. 11 - 17 is 7.0%, which is the lowest it has been since late October.

The test positivity rate is a metric the state began providing in late October. It is calculated by using the total number of positive tests over the total number of tests. This is the metric being used to by state health officials to make decisions about mitigations.

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As of Sunday night, 781,150 doses of vaccine have been delivered to providers in Illinois, including Chicago, with an additional 304,600 doses allocated to federal government partners for long-term care facilities, bringing the total number delivered in Illinois to 1,085,750.

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IDPH reports that a total of 495,563 vaccine doses, including 66,679 at long-term facilities. The seven-day rolling average of vaccines administered is 22,856 .

The IDPH says that vaccine distribution numbers are reported in real-time and vaccine administration numbers lag by as much as 72 hours.

Getting COVID-19 vaccine shot Q&A

Chicagoans who have questions about COVID-19 vaccines can get answers at an event hosted by Chicago Women Take Action and Women2Win. The panel discussion will have doctors answering questions to help people better understand the vaccines.

The event will run from 6:30-7:30 p.m. and livestreamed on Facebook at

The deaths reported Monday include:

-Champaign County: 1 female 60s, 1 male 60s, 1 male 80s

-Cook County: 1 male 30s, 2 females 50s, 3 females 60s, 3 males 60s, 3 females 70s, 3 males 70s, 6 females 80s, 3 males 80s, 2 females 90s, 4 males 90s

-DuPage County: 1 female 60s, 1 male 60s, 1 female 70s, 1 male 80s, 1 female 90s

-Franklin County: 1 male 60s

- Hancock County: 1 female 80s

-Kane County: 1 female 40s,

-Lake County: 1 male 70s

-Madison County: 1 male 80s

-St. Clair County: 1 female 100+

-Tazewell County: 1 male 60s, 1 female 80s

-Warren County: 1 male 90s

-Will County: 1 male 60s, 1 male 70s, 1 male 80s