Governor Pritzker on COVID-19: ‘The state is going in the wrong direction’

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Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker

MURPHYSBORO, Ill. (WCIA) — The surge of coronavirus cases across the state means that there will be a surge in updates from Gov. JB Pritzker, as well. On Monday, Pritzker said that he will return to daily COVID-19 briefings as the virus situation worsens across the state.

“While we continue to see a safer pandemic landscape than back in April and May in terms of positivity, hospital capacity and community spread… things have changed,” he said. “Every region of the state has started to move in the wrong direction.”

Over the past week, nearly every region in the state has seen an increase in hospitalizations. On October 15, the state set a record-high number of positive cases in a day (4,015), then surpassed that number on Friday, when 4,554 new cases were announced.

“All of this takes place in a national landscape of increasing positivity rates, and where the majority of our border states have been called out as national hotspots: With Indiana and Missouri seeing hospitals reaching capacity with ICU shortages, and with Wisconsin’s need so severe that the state has opened a field hospital with plans for more potentially in the works, our neighboring states of Missouri, Iowa, Wisconsin and Indiana, all have double digit positivity rates reaching as high as nearly 25 percent,” Pritzker said. “We can’t wall off Illinois from the surge, but we can take extra precautions and do better than others and following the mitigations that slow the spread.”

Pritzker delivered his comments from Murphysboro in Jackson County, part of the state’s coronavirus region (Region 5) that has surpassed the recommended eight-percent COVID-19 test positivity rate (9.1 percent).

As a result, Region 5 will join Region 1 with extra mitigation efforts. They go into effect on Thursday.

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