Illinois surpasses 900,000 COVID-19 cases

Illinois on Sunday snapped an unprecedented 12-day streak of the state reporting 100 or more deaths.

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A lab technician cleans a test tube containing a live sample taken from people tested for the novel coronavirus at a facility in Scotland.

State health officials on Sunday announced an additional 79 coronavirus-related deaths, snapping an unprecedented 12-day streak of Illinois reporting 100 or more deaths.

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State health officials on Sunday announced an additional 79 coronavirus-related deaths, snapping an unprecedented 12-day streak of Illinois reporting 100 or more deaths.

Though Sunday was the first time the state hadn’t recorded a three-digit daily death toll in almost two weeks, Illinois is still in the midst of its deadliest stretch of the pandemic, and it’s not unusual to see lower numbers on the weekends due to backlogged reporting.

This month, Illinois has logged nearly 3,000 coronavirus-related deaths, which is more than 19.4% of the state’s pandemic death toll of 15,202.

Half of Sunday’s 79 fatalities were reported in the Chicago area. The vast majority of those deaths reported statewide were among people 60 and older, with people under 60 accounting for six of Sunday’s total deaths.

Illinois also surpassed 900,000 coronavirus cases Sunday with state health officials announcing 6,003 new confirmed and probable COVID-19 infections.

The new cases were detected among the latest batch of 78,079 tests processed by the Illinois Department of Public Health in the last day, meaning about 7.7% of tests came back positive.

Most of the state’s metrics have gradually declined since the state’s late fall resurgence peaked in late November. The state’s seven-day positivity rate dropped from 8.2% Saturday to 7.8% Sunday, the lowest it’s been since Oct. 31.

Sunday also marked the 10th consecutive day Illinois reported fewer than 10,000 new cases. Statewide hospitalizations have also been on a slow decline over the last month after peaking with 6,175 occupied beds Nov. 20. As of Saturday night, 4,389 people were hospitalized in Illinois with COVID-19, with 991 of those patients in intensive-care units and 546 on ventilators, officials said.

In total, 900,370 people in Illinois have been confirmed to have the virus among the more than 12.4 million tests processed over the last nine months. That’s about 7.1% of the state’s population.

Most people who contract the virus show mild to no symptoms, and the state boasts a recovery rate of 98%.

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