3K more residents infected, but 63K more vaccinated against coronavirus across Illinois

The state’s rolling average of doses administered per day is now up to 49,909, while about 285,000 people have received both required doses.

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A Walmart employee prepares to administer the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine last week at a Walmart in the Austin neighborhood.

A Walmart employee prepares to administer the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine last week at a Walmart in the Austin neighborhood.

Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

Public health officials on Saturday announced another high vaccination day for Illinois as the state logged 3,062 new cases of COVID-19 and 60 more deaths attributed to it. 

Just over 63,000 shots went into arms Friday, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health, the third highest number of doses administered in a day with the state almost two months into an unprecedented vaccination campaign. 

Nearly 1.3 million shots have been doled out in all, but only about 285,000 people have received both required doses so far — not even 2.3% of the population. Officials are aiming to immunize at least 80% of the state’s 12.7 million residents. 

But the effort has gained steam over the past two weeks as about 3.2 million eligible residents continue scrambling to lock up vaccination appointments. The state’s rolling average of doses administered per day is now up to 49,909. 

Meanwhile, infection rates have sunk to their lowest levels since early October. 

The latest cases were confirmed among 90,295 tests, which raised Illinois’ average positivity rate over the past week a tenth of a percentage point, up to 3.4%. Overall, though, that number, which indicates how rapidly the virus is spreading, has fallen steadily from 8.5% a month ago. 

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COVID-19 hospital admissions have shrunk to about a third of the peak levels the state suffered in November, with 2,271 beds occupied as of Friday night. 

But the virus has still claimed an average of 58 Illinois lives per day over the last week. Nineteen of the latest victims were from Cook County. 

The state’s death toll has climbed to 19,585 as more than 1.1 million residents have been infected since last March.

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