Pritzker warns 2 Illinois counties as COVID-19 cases rise to ‘warning level’

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PEORIA, Ill. (WTVO) — At a news conference on Thursday, Gov. JB Pritzker warned Peoria and LaSalle bars could close and restaurants may limit indoor service if the West Central region sees a continued climb in coronavirus cases.

“Last week, I mentioned that while we were seeing a concerning rolling 7-day average positivity rate of 7.1% in the Metro East, the rest of our 11 regions all fell below 5%,” Pritzker said.

“As of Tuesday’s data update, the Metro East was hitting a 7.8% rate, and with the Metro East included, we now have six regions with a positivity rate above 5%,” he continued.

Peoria County Public Health Administrator Monica Hendrickson said, “Our positivity rate has doubled in the last two weeks.” She also said hospital capacity was dwindling.

The region would effectively roll back into Phase 3 of the Governor’s Restore Illinois plan.

On Wednesday, July 29, the Illinois Department of Public Health reported 1,393 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state, including 18 additional deaths.

Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 175,124 cases, including 7,462 deaths, in 102 counties in Illinois.

As of Tuesday night, 1,491 people in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 355 patients were in the ICU and 152 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

Pritzker announced Wednesday new restrictions on youth and adult recreation sports statewide for the upcoming school year due to coronavirus.

Football and basketball are suspended, except for no-contact practices.

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