Cook County suburban COVID-19 risk rises to ‘medium’ level

COOK COUNTY, IL — Public health officials have said an increased level of coronavirus transmission in suburban Cook County means the area has entered the “medium” risk level.

As of Thursday, there were 210 weekly cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 residents in suburban Cook County, according to the Cook County Department of Public Health.

As a result, the rolling average number of new daily cases last week hit its highest level since February 1.

Public health officials have recommended socializing outdoors, getting tested before attending public or family events, wearing a mask indoors, and getting all COVID-19 vaccine boosters. available.

“These recommendations are not new but are put forward to protect our communities from further increases in COVID,” Dr. Rachel Rubin, chief medical officer and co-head of the department, said in a statement. “As hospitalizations remain low, we want to contain the spread more now.”

Any community where there are more than 200 new cases per 100,000 people each week is considered a medium or high risk area, depending on hospitalization rates, according to the latest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. frame.

In the suburban Cook County jurisdiction of the health department, there were 4.8 hospital admissions per 100,000 people for the week ending Friday.

Meanwhile, people with coronavirus occupied a total of 3.1% of hospital beds in the region. If either number reached double digits, the county would be considered at “high” risk, according to the CDC’s new framework.

Outside the jurisdiction of the CCDPH, the transmission rate was 282 per 100,000 Evanston residents, 326 per 100,000 Skokie inhabitants and 369 per 100,000 Oak Park residents, according to the most recent data available from other suburban Cook County public health departments.

DuPage County was added to the list of places with “medium” levels of community transmission two weeks ago, according to the CDC. Lake County was added last week.

More … than 90 percent of the United States remains at “low risk”. But last week, the number of “high risk” counties rose 40% to a total of 56, the majority of which are in upstate New York.

A graphic courtesy of the Cook County Department of Public Health shows the number of COVID-19 cases reported in suburban Cook County over time. (Cook County Public Health Department)

Martin E. Berry