Illinois reports 1,000 new COVID-19 cases on biggest testing day ever in the state
Illinois was hit with its worst day for new coronavirus cases in more than a month Thursday as health officials announced an additional 1,018 people have tested positive, sending the state’s overall case tally to more than 150,000.
The Illinois Department of Public Health also said another 20 deaths have been attributed to COVID-19, raising the state’s pandemic death toll to 7,119.
While that increase in deaths is close to the state’s daily average so far in July, Illinois had not tallied 1,000 cases or more in a day since June 5.
And since a nearly three-month-low case count of 462 on June 22, daily caseloads have inched upward — but so have the state’s testing numbers.
The latest cases were confirmed among 36,180 test results, the state’s largest batch received in any given day, good for a positivity rate of about 2.8%. That’s above the state’s rolling positivity rate of 2.6% in the last week, but Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s office said it’s not cause for alarm.
“We’re watching the data closely every day, but our uptick in cases closely correlates with increased testing that’s been accomplished over the last couple of weeks,” Pritzker press secretary Jordan Abudayyeh said.
During Illinois peak month of May, an average of about 2,172 cases were being confirmed each day as about 20,270 daily tests were administered.
The daily case rate fell to about 764 in June, with an average of 23,490 tests per day.
So far this month, about 807 people have tested positive each day, from a whopping average of 30,643 tests per day.
A total of 150,450 people have contracted the virus among almost 1.9 million people tested in Illinois in the last four months.
The state entered its fourth phase of reopening June 26, two weeks ago. That’s about how long officials have said it would take to see any potential impact of loosened regulations on Illinois’ pandemic curve.
As of Wednesday night, 1,507 patients were hospitalized with COVID-19, including 317 in intensive care units and 153 on ventilators.