Gov. Pritzker announces Illinois will move into Phase 5, fully reopen Friday
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WIFR) - With Illinois recording the lowest number of hospitalizations and test positivity rates since March 2020, Gov. Pritzker says the Land of Lincoln is ready to move to Phase 5, which is the final phase of the ‘Restore Illinois’ plan and will fully reopen.
On Friday, the state will eliminate all capacity limits on businesses, large-scale events, conventions, amusement parks, and all other venues. Mask requirements for vaccinated and non-vaccinated individuals continue to align with CDC guidelines. The state reaches this point as it records the lowest number of people in the hospital with COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic, the lowest test positivity rate, and more than 68% of Illinois residents age 18 and over who have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine.
In accordance with guidance from the CDC, fully vaccinated people in Illinois can resume activities without wearing a mask except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.
Consistent with CDC guidance, fully vaccinated and non-vaccinated persons are required to wear a face-covering in certain situations including (1) on public transportation, planes, buses, trains, and in transportation hubs such as airports and train and bus stations; (2) in congregate facilities such as correctional facilities and homeless shelters; and (3) in health care settings. Individuals in schools and daycares must also continue to wear face coverings per guidance issued by the Illinois State Board of Education, Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, and the Illinois Department of Public Health.
“A strong economy requires that people not only feel safe, but truly be safe, as they go about their lives as workers, neighbors, consumers, and friends – and thanks to the lifesaving power of vaccinations, that day is finally here for Illinois,” said Gov. J.B. Pritzker. “I invite all Illinoisans to feel the hope and joy of this moment while also recognizing that this pandemic is still very present for the world at large – not to mention those here at home who have not been or cannot be vaccinated. As we take this next step forward, let’s do so with a renewed commitment to empathy, to the community, and to making each day together count. You did it, Illinois.”
Today the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is reporting 366 new confirmed and probable cases, 764 people in the hospital with COVID-19, and a test positivity rate of 1.3 percent. These are some of the lowest COVID-19 statistics reported in Illinois to date. Additionally, IDPH is reporting 209 people with COVID-19 in the ICU and 103 people on ventilators. These are also some of the lowest counts we’ve seen since the pandemic began.
Currently, 11.9 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered to Illinois residents. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is reporting more than 68 percent of residents age 18 and older in Illinois have received at least one dose of vaccine and 51 percent of adults are fully vaccinated. Additionally, more than 88 percent of Illinois seniors have received at least one dose of vaccine.
To help businesses recover from the pandemic, the Governor, in partnership with the General Assembly, announced $1.5 billion in funding next year to support business grants, tourism, workforce, affordable housing, violence prevention, capital projects and other investments throughout Illinois. This investment follows the $580 million invested last year for Business Interruption grants to aid businesses in pandemic impacted industries and childcare providers.
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