Report: Long-term care facilities account for 52 percent of state’s COVID-19 deaths
Fifty-two percent of COVID-19 deaths in Illinois are now linked to long-term care facilities, according to the latest data released by the Illinois Department of Public Health.
There have been at least 2,744 deaths of residents or workers at such facilities, as of Friday. At that time, there were a total of 5,270 reported deaths in Illinois.
The percentage of deaths linked to long-term care facilities increased from last week, when just over half of Illinois deaths were linked to such sites.
At least 17,098 long-term care facility residents or workers have tested positive for COVID-19.
The numbers come as the Illinois Department of Public Health has issued a new rule requiring long-term care facilities to develop their own individualized COVID-19 testing plan and document an established relationship with a testing lab.
State officials reported 121 more COVID-19 related deaths over the weekend, bringing the state’s total death count to 5,390. An additional 2,805 total cases were reported, bringing the state’s total to 120,260 in 101 counties.
A total of 46,497 tests were processed over the weekend. There have now been 898,259 completed tests.
This weekend was the first since Illinois entered phase three of its reopening plan, which includes the partial reopening of bars, restaurants, child care services, manufacturing, offices, retail, barbershops and salons.
Pritzker said Friday that Illinois is no longer under his stay-at-home order, issuing a new executive order that further loosened restrictions.
Also included in his new order was an extension of executive orders requiring health insurance companies to cover telehealth services and providing healthcare providers and workers liability protections for providing care during the new coronavirus pandemic.
Both orders have been extended to June 27, the day after what Pritzker said is the earliest the state may enter phase four of the reopening plan.
Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike cautioned residents on Friday to be aware of any scams related to contact tracing as efforts ramp up. She said contact tracers will not ask for social security numbers, nor any information related to one’s finances.
“Please know that if any requests for that are associated with contact tracing, that is in fact a scam,” Ezike said.
Pritzker also said that starting this week, the administration will no longer hold daily COVID-19 press conferences. He said they will instead be held on an “as needed” basis. The Illinois Department of Public Health will continue to release daily COVID-19 data.
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