State health officials reported 12 additional deaths related to COVID-19 Monday while another 1,773 Illinois residents have been infected by the disease.
That brings the state’s death toll to 7,756, while 207,854 cases of COVID-19 have been diagnosed in Illinois since the outbreak began.
The new data puts the state’s seven-day average infection rate at 4.2%.
Illinois Department of Public Health officials unveiled a new travel advisory map on the agency’s COVID-19 data website, dph.illinois.gov/covid19.
The map shows which states have an infection rate of 15 cases per 100,000 residents or higher. It also shows global figures.
“We know this virus doesn’t stop at the border of a county or a region,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “If you’re looking for a vacation, this is simple guidance to help you pick one location over another.”
The map shows 17 states that exceed the recommended level, mostly in the south. Illinois is at 14 cases per 100,000 residents. Border states Iowa and Missouri have rates that exceed the warning level. Iowa’s rate is 16 cases per 100,000 residents, while Missouri is at 23 cases per 100,000 residents.
Illinois’ infection rate has been fueled, in part, by an uptick in cases in the Metro East region adjacent to St. Louis. State officials on Sunday ordered more restrictions, which go into effect Tuesday, after the region’s infection rate topped 8% for four straight days and health officials recorded nine days over the past 10 days with increased rates of positive test results.
That means gatherings in the seven-county region will be limited to 25 people or 25% of a facility’s capacity. Bars, restaurants, casinos and other gambling facilities will close at 11 p.m. Party buses will no longer be allowed to operate. Indoor dining will be limited to six people per table, reception halls will close and bar stools will be removed to prevent congregating.
IDPH officials said the region may return to less stringent mitigation efforts if the positivity rate drops to 6.5% or below for two weeks. Additional restrictions could be enforced if the positivity rate doesn’t decline, IDPH officials warned.
“I have made it clear that neither arbitrary dates on a calendar nor political pressure will dictate Illinois’ efforts to protect our people,” Pritzker said. “If the data shows we need to go backward in our reopening, I won’t hesitate to tighten restrictions to protect our collective health.”
In the suburbs, the region with Will and Kankakee counties is the closest to having restrictions imposed. That region has seen six of 10 days with increased positivity rates and is currently averaging a 6.8% daily positivity rate, according to IDPH figures.