The Illinois Department of Public Health on Monday, March 16 announced 12 new cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) across Illinois.
Currently, IDPH is reporting 105 cases in 15 counties in Illinois. Cases have occurred in all age ranges and the number of cases that do not have a clear connection to travel or a known COVID-19 case is increasing.
Two additional counties are now reporting cases, Peoria and Will counties. Other locations with cases include Chicago and Champaign, Clinton, Cook, Cumberland, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, Sangamon, St. Clair, Whiteside, Winnebago, and Woodford counties.
“We know there is a lot of concern as the number of cases and locations increase,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “However, not everyone who has respiratory symptoms like cough and shortness of breath needs to be tested. Similarly, not everyone who is infected with novel coronavirus needs medical treatment.
“We want to make sure those at higher risk of severe illness are prioritized for testing and that they can receive the medical care they need. We ask those who have mild symptoms to stay home so the health care system is not overwhelmed.”
Information so far suggests that most COVID-19 illness is mild. However, older people and people of all ages with severe chronic medical conditions, like heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes, seem to be at higher risk of developing serious illness.
It is crucial to limit contact with older people and those with certain health conditions.
Social distancing measures, such as working from home when possible, limiting the amount of time spent in the community, and trying to avoid public transportation as much as possible, will help reduce the number of people who become sick at any given time and the possibility of exhausting our health care resources, the IDPH stated.
For information about how you, your school, workplace, and community can prepare, please visit Preventing COVID-19 Spread in Communities. For general questions about COVID-19, call the hotline at 1-800-889-3931 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.