Illinois COVID-19 Update: IL reports 7,377 cases, 181 coronavirus deaths; no post-Thanksgiving surge, Ezike says

Illinois tops 15K COVID-19 deaths since pandemic began
CHICAGO (WLS) -- Illinois public health officials reported 7,377 COVID-19 cases and 181 related deaths Friday as the death toll since the pandemic began surpassed 15,000.

The total number of cases in Illinois now stands at 886,805, with a total of 15,015 deaths.

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Illinois public health officials reported 7,377 COVID-19 cases and 181 related deaths Friday as the death toll since the pandemic began surpassed 15,000.



Illinois Director of Public Health Dr. Ngozi Ezike shared a bit of good news during Friday's press conference: Illinois did not see a post-Thanksgiving surge in COVID-19 cases.

"I am really happy to say that we did not see the significant surge that we were very much concerned about in relation to all the reports that we saw of the large amount of travel," Dr. Ezike said. "I think all the mitigations that we had in place in advance of Thanksgiving, have been helpful. So, no we did not see a surge following Thanksgiving."

But the number of COVID-19 deaths is still breaking records in Illinois. For the last 11 days straight, more than 100 people have died every day.

To put the staggering number of 15,000 lives lost into perspective, that's more people than the population of Midlothian, Palos Heights, Winnetka or Markham.

Prior to the fall surge, state health officials had said they expected to see around 11,000 deaths by the end of the year.

"It really seems worse to have someone get infected now and succumb to this virus when we're really close to having a way to have that not be the eventuality," Illinois Director of Public Health Dr. Ngozi Ezike said.

And that's because of the vaccine. Pfizer doses are now being administered across Illinois. Each vial was expected to provide five doses, but the FDA is updating its recommendation to use every full dose from each bottle.

"What people have seen here in Illinois and across other states, a sixth dose can be extracted from that vial and, in some cases, even a 7th dose," Dr. Ezike said.

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Gov. JB Pritzker's office provided this video of the first COVID-19 vaccines as they arrived in Illinois on December 14, 2020.



It's unclear how many more doses that means in Illinois, but it comes on the heels of a holiday warning. For the last two months, Dr. Ezike said the highest number of cases has been people ages 20 to 29 years old.

"While these younger people are much less likely to suffer severe illness, we still see that those younger individuals can expose our older family, older friends who could suffer illness if they were to gather for the holidays," Dr. Ezike said.

Like Thanksgiving, state officials recommend you only celebrate with those in your household.

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Dr. Robert Citronberg with Advocate Aurora Health describes his experience getting the COVID-19 vaccine.



"The best way we can protect our frontline workers and slow the spread of this virus is to double-down on mask wearing, social distancing, washing hands frequently," Gov. JB Pritzker said.
Over a 24-hour period, officials said the state processed 112,292 specimens. In total there have been 12,259,595 specimens tested since the start of the pandemic in Illinois.

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The preliminary seven-day statewide test positivity from Dec. 11-17 is 9.7%.

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.

As of Thursday night, 4,690 people in Illinois were reported to be hospitalized with COVID-19. Of those, 1,023 patients were in the ICU with COVID-19 and 589 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

The deaths reported Friday include:

- Adams County: 1 male 80s
- Boone County: 1 male 80s, 2 females 90s, 1 male 90s
- Cass County: 1 female 70s

- Clay County: 1 male 80s, 1 female 90s
- Cook County: 2 males 40s, 2 females 50s, 4 males 50s, 6 females 60s, 8 males 60s, 7 females 70s, 14 males 70s, 11 females 80s, 9 males 80s, 8 females 90s, 5 males 90s
- Cumberland County: 1 male 90s
- DeKalb County: 1 male 60s, 1 male 70s
- Douglas County: 1 male 90s
- DuPage County: 1 male 40s, 1 male 50s, 1 male 70s, 1 female 90s, 1 male 90s
- Effingham County: 1 female 100+
- Ford County: 2 males 80s, 1 female 90s, 1 male 90s
- Fulton County: 1 male 80s
- Grundy County: 1 male 80s
- Hancock County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 80s
- Iroquois County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 80s
- Jasper County: 1 male 80s
- Jefferson County: 1 male 50s, 1 female 60s, 1 male 80s
- Jersey County: 1 female 90s
- Kane County: 1 female 70s, 1 male 70s, 1 male 80s
- Kankakee County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 80s, 1 female 90s
- Knox County: 1 male 70s
- Lake County: 1 male 60s, 1 male 70s, 3 females 80s, 1 male 80s, 5 females 90s
- LaSalle County: 1 female 70s, 1 male 70s
- Lawrence County: 1 male 70s
- Livingston County: 1 male 70s, 2 females 80s

- Logan County: 1 female 70s, 1 female 80s, 1 male 80s
- Madison County: 1 female 60s, 1 female 80s
- Marion County: 1 female 50s, 2 males 70s
- McHenry County: 1 female 80s, 1 male 80s
- McLean County: 1 female 60s
- Morgan County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 90s
- Ogle County: 1 male 70s
- Peoria County: 1 female 70s, 1 female 80s, 1 male 90s
- Rock Island County: 2 males 70s
- Sangamon County: 1 male 50s, 1 female 60s, 1 male 70s, 1 male 90s
- Shelby County: 1 male 70s
- St. Clair County: 1 female 80s, 1 male 80s
- Stephenson County: 1 male 80s
- Tazewell County: 2 females 80s, 1 male 90s, 1 female 100+
- Warren County: 1 female 80s, 1 male 80s
- Wayne County: 1 male 70s
- White County: 1 female 70s
- Whiteside County: 1 female 80s
- Will County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 80s, 3 males 80s, 1 male 90s
- Williamson County: 1 male 60s
- Winnebago County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 80s, 1 female 90s
- Woodford County: 2 females 80s
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