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31 more Illinois coronavirus deaths reported, lowest daily toll in over a month

The state’s death toll stands at 4,884, with just over half the deaths occurring this month. Illinois first coronavirus death was confirmed March 16. 

Health care workers at Rush Hospital stand in line waiting to get ice cream from a truck on May 15.
Health care workers at Rush Hospital stand in line waiting to get ice cream from a truck on May 15.
Tyler LaRiviere/Sun-Times

Health officials on Monday announced an additional 31 people have died of COVID-19 in Illinois, marking the lowest number of deaths reported for a 24-period in over a month.

The state had last reported 31 deaths on April 5. In seven weeks since then, there have been 21 days with 100 or more deaths attributed to the coronavirus.

The latest daily count was the seventh sub-100 total in the last 10 days. Gov. J.B. Pritzker said last week he was “optimistic that we are falling from a peak,” which his office has said could last through June.

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But Pritzker’s office has cautioned in the past that case counts can sometimes lag over weekends due to slower reporting from some local health departments. Both death and case totals have tended to be lower on Mondays, followed by relative upticks on Tuesdays.

The state’s death toll stands at 4,884, with just over half the deaths occurring in May. Illinois’ first coronavirus death was confirmed March 16.

The Illinois Department of Public Health also announced 1,713 newly confirmed cases of COVID-19, raising the state’s tally to 112,017 since the first resident tested positive Jan. 24.

Almost 22,000 coronavirus tests were administered statewide Sunday, and more than 769,000 people have been tested overall. The state’s rolling positivity rate over the last week is 12%.

And regional testing and hospitalization rates were still meeting benchmarks to allow the entire state to advance to the third phase of Pritzker’s reopening plan when his stay-at-home order expires Friday.

The governor on Sunday released guidelines for retail stores, salons, restaurants and other “non-essential” businesses to resume operations with precautions in place when the order lifts. Mayor Lori Lightfoot has said Chicago businesses will have to wait until “early June.”