Illinois announces 6 additional coronavirus deaths as downward trend continues

Sunday’s six deaths are the fewest announced on one day since March 25, at the start of the pandemic.

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A worker checks in a Chicago resident at a COVID-19 testing site in June.

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Illinois health officials announced Sunday an additional six coronavirus deaths, the lowest one-day total since March 25.

Sunday’s update continues a downward trend for the state. On Saturday, officials announced 10 additional deaths, which was the lowest since March 30.

The state’s first COVID-19 death didn’t occur until March 17, so the numbers through the first days of July mirror the very beginning of the pandemic that has so far cost Illinois 7,020 lives.

The Illinois Department of Public Health also reported 639 new coronavirus cases Sunday. That increases the state’s total case count to 147,251; officials say the vast majority of people who tested positive have since recovered.

Those new cases were found among 27,235 processed tests, for a daily positivity rate of 2.3%. The state’s positivity rate over the past week is about 2.5%.

Many states in the southern and western U.S. have seen large spikes in COVID-19 cases this summer. As a result, a 14-day quarantine requirement for anyone traveling to Chicago from a coronavirus hotspot goes into effect Monday.

Neighboring Wisconsin and Indiana have seen case numbers and positivity rates turn up slightly over the past week.

But Illinois continues to see encouraging results in terms of reducing the spread and impact of the virus within its borders.

Not since June 5 have more than 1,000 new cases in a day been reported in Illinois, while Florida announced 10,059 new cases on Sunday alone. And after Illinois averaged about 100 coronavirus deaths per day in May, including a daily high of 192, it cut that average roughly in half in June.

July, so far, is on pace to continue that dramatic downward trend.

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