80 more deaths, 1,346 new cases, as Gov. Pritzker outlines state’s coronavirus budget mess

Illinois is now approaching 1,000 coronavirus deaths and 25,000 cases overall.

SHARE 80 more deaths, 1,346 new cases, as Gov. Pritzker outlines state’s coronavirus budget mess
Gov. J.B. Pritzker speaks at a news conference last year.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker speaks at a Monday news conference.

Tyler LaRiviere/Sun-Times file

Illinois health officials on Wednesday said another 80 people have died from the coronavirus, with 1,346 new cases reported — but Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s administration says both the new hospitalization and death rate remain flat.

Pritzker for days has said Illinois is indeed “bending the curve.” But he’s warned repeatedly that residents must continue to stay home in order for the curve to truly drop. Residents are abiding by executive orders that mandate school closures and the stay-at-home order until April 30, but many are expecting an extension.

With the additional 80 deaths reported on Wednesday, Illinois has now lost 948 people to the coronavirus. With 1,346 new positive cases, the state has now seen 24,593 total cases.

New York City on Tuesday announced, 3,700 “probable deaths.” And Pritzker’s office said Illinois could also be adding to its death total, per new CDC guidelines.

According to the governor’s office, there were 6,300 tests administered from Tuesday to Wednesday. On April 13, there were 1,189 COVID-19 patients in the ICU, with 796 ventilators being used. On April 14, there were 1,185 coronavirus patients in ICU rooms with 764 ventilators being used.

At Wednesday’s briefing, Pritzker and Deputy Governor Dan Hynes planned to detail the state’s budget struggles in light of the coronavirus outbreak.

Citing a “massive economic disruption that’s unprecedented in modern history,” Pritzker’s office is estimating a $2.7 billion state revenue shortfall for the current fiscal year, and $4.6 billion for next.

“This is a public health crisis – but it is accompanied by massive economic disruption that’s unprecedented in modern history. Illinoisans are all too familiar with the pain the lack of a state budget can cause, so let me just say up front: we will not go without a state budget,” Pritzker said in a statement.“We will need to make extraordinarily difficult decisions on top of the difficult decisions we’ve already made, but together with the state legislature we will make them and we will do so with an unswerving dedication to fairness. In the midst of a pandemic, I am more resolute than ever to protect those who are suffering physical and financial hardship from it.”

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