Summer Surge In Child Respiratory Illnesses A Worrying Sign For The Months Ahead

PEORIA — A doctor at the OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois in Peoria says she’s concerned about how the upcoming fall and winter might play out with the unusual recent surge in pediatric respiratory illnesses. Dr. Michele Beekman is a pediatric hospitalist at the Children’s Hospital of Illinois, and an associate professor of clinical […]

Rev. Jesse Jackson, Wife Jacqueline Hospitalized For COVID

CHICAGO — The Rev. Jesse Jackson and his wife, Jacqueline, have been hospitalized after testing positive for COVID-19. The famed 79-year-old civil rights leader is vaccinated against the virus and publicly received his first dose in January. According to a statement released Saturday evening, the Jacksons are being treated at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago. […]

As Trusted Voices, Farmers Could Be Key To Boosting Rural Vaccination Rates

When he first became eligible for the coronavirus vaccine in Illinois, Tom Arnold, 68, says he didn’t need any convincing. He raises cattle, hogs and chickens in Elizabeth, a small rural town in the northwest corner of the state. After all, who better to understand why herd immunity matters than a herdsman? “Being a livestock […]

First Lawsuit Filed Over Pritzker’s School Mask Mandate

SPRINGFIELD — Prolific anti-COVID mitigation attorney Tom DeVore on Monday filed suit over Gov. JB Pritzker’s mandate requiring all students, faculty and staff at Illinois schools wear masks in the face of the coronavirus’ more contagious Delta variant spreading across the state. DeVore filed the suit on behalf of a father of a student in […]

Pandemic Exacerbates Lack of Mental And Emotional Support For Teachers

URBANA – Since March 2020, when regular classroom teaching was curtailed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, teachers have been juggling transitions between remote, hybrid, and in-person learning; changing class schedules; students with a wide variety of technical needs; and their own mental and physical health. Some Champaign-Urbana teachers say trying to help their students through […]

Illinois State Fair Announces Mask And Testing Requirements

SPRINGFIELD — Visitors to the Illinois State Fair, which begins next week, will be required to follow certain mitigations amid rising cases and hospitalizations of COVID-19, driven by the more transmissible Delta variant. Both the Illinois Department of Public Health and Illinois Department of Agriculture today announced all fair attendees to the 10-day event, regardless […]

Carle Health Adopts COVID Vaccine Requirement For Staff

URBANA — Carle Health has announced it will require staff to get the COVID vaccine or face tougher safety measures. The mandate applies to staff at all Carle Health facilities. The Urbana-based health care system made the announcement Friday and said the new policy takes effect immediately. Carle Health also didn’t rule out a more […]

Masks Mandated At Schools, Day Cares, Long-Term Care Facilities

SPRINGFIELD – Masks will be required at all Illinois long-term care facilities, day cares and Pre-K-12 schools, Gov. JB Pritzker announced Wednesday amid a nationwide surge of COVID-19. “Every time we think we know where this virus is headed, it changes and it shifts,” Pritzker said at a COVID-19 briefing in Chicago. “For example, unlike […]

GOP Candidates Oppose New COVID Masking Guidelines

CARBONDALE – Republicans who hope to unseat Gov. JB Pritzker next year say his new masking and vaccination guidelines are an over-reach, and the decisions should be left to local control. Pritzker announced Wednesday that all students and staff members in schools must wear face coverings effective immediately, regardless of their vaccination status, in order […]

Statewide COVID-19 ICU Bed Usage Jumps 15 Percent Overnight

SPRINGFIELD – Hospitalizations for COVID-19 jumped by more than 13 percent from Sunday to Monday night while intensive care bed usage jumped 15 percent as the delta variant of the virus continued to cause a surge nationwide. According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, 1,107 individuals with COVID-19-like illness were hospitalized as of Monday […]

CDC Issues New Eviction Ban For Most Of US Through Oct. 3

WASHINGTON — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a new moratorium on evictions that would last until October 3. The Biden administration is trying to quell intensifying criticism that it was allowing vulnerable renters to lose their homes during a pandemic. The new moratorium could help keep millions in their homes as […]

With A COVID-19 Vaccine For Kids Months Away, St. Louis Doctor Has Advice For Parents

ST. LOUIS — More children and adolescents are testing positive for the coronavirus in the U.S., with the number of new weekly infections quadrupling since late June. In Missouri, where more than 61,000 children and adolescents have tested positive for the virus and five have died from COVID-19 since the onset of the pandemic, infections […]

COVID-19 Contact Tracers Still Connecting Infected People With Support, A Year & Thousands Of Anxious Calls Later

ROCKFORD — Julie Hovland has talked to more people infected with COVID-19 than just about anyone. She’s been a contact tracer for the Winnebago County Health Department for nearly a full year. https://cpa.ds.npr.org/s528/audio/2021/07/0728tracef.mp3 Listen to this story here. A former substitute teacher forced indoors by early lockdowns, she was glued to her TV watching daily […]

Federal Officials Give UIC $6M To Test COVID-19 Treatment

CHICAGO — The University of Illinois Chicago has received a $6 million from the federal government to test a potential drug to treat COVID-19. Researchers say the drug candidate, called VT-109, has been shown to help restore function to damaged lungs, among other things. The drug will be tested in pre-clinical animal models of COVID-19 […]

Map: New Daily COVID-19 Cases

The federal government issued new guidance calling for the return of mask wearing in virus hot spots amid a dramatic spike in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations nationwide. The following U.S. county map shows the 7-day rolling average for new COVID-19 cases. This map will automatically update daily.