COVID-19

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This is a guide to the things we do know, from scientists, doctors and public health experts — a resource that changes alongside our understanding of this virus.

FAQ:  The Essential Coronavirus FAQ
MAP:  The real-time spread of coronavirus
STATE:  Tracking by State

Nursing homes across Illinois claim they haven’t received the amount of personal protective equipment they have asked for. In response, a group of Illinois Senate Democrats are asking the state’s public health department to disclose more information about shipments. 

The Illinois Department of Employment Security has been busy since the COVID-19 pandemic started.

SIU Team Working On Virus Tracker

May 7, 2020
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

At SIU, a computing professor and two of his students are hoping to make it easier for people to know if they’ve been exposed to the coronavirus.

Koushik Sinha is an assistant professor at the School of Computing. He and two graduate students, Zachary Vanscoit and Sai Shanmukha Narumanchi, are building the tool, along with a collaborator in Australia.

Sinha said the virus contact map would use GPS data already gathered by people’s phones. It could be used by the general public and public health officials who are trying to trace the spread of the novel coronavirus.

State of Illinois

Illinois' Public Health Department says another 2,641 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the state, bringing the total positive test results to 70,873.

White supremacist organizations have infiltrated stay-at-home  protests such as  those in Springfield and Chicago last week, according to the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism. 

David Goldenberg, the Midwest regional director of the ADL, says over the last two weeks the center has tracked dozens of rallies to protest stay-at-home orders across the country, including in Illinois. “They’ve attracted a good number of members who are members of extremist organizations,’’ he said.

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Governor JB Pritzker holds a press briefing on the state’s current response and action plan for managing COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in Illinois.

The live stream will begin at 2:30 p.m.

Illinois Republican lawmakers are taking issue with Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s Restore Illinois plan that outlines how officials plan to reopen the state’s economy in five phases. 

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker said state government has been extending help to communities of color that have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic . The governor also offered a stern warning to employers failing to protect their employees from contracting the virus on the job.

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Carbondale Main Street is asking consumers to fill out a survey.

City of Carbondale spokesperson Roni LeForge says it's designed to give local businesses an idea of when people might be feel comfortable enough to return to some more normal activities.

The state of Illinois is recording 2,270 new cases of COVID-19, with an additional 136 deaths.

State of IL

Local lawmakers say while they're pleased to have a better idea of Governor Pritzker's plans when it comes to the COVID-19 stay-at-home order, they also want to see more.

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Carbondale Park District

The Carbondale Park District is putting 18 full-time employees on what it calls "temporary furlough," as the agency deals with the economic impact of the coronavirus.

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Governor JB Pritzker holds a press briefing on the state’s current response and action plan for managing COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in Illinois.

The live stream will begin at 2:30 p.m.

Pritzker Announces Phased Reopening Plan

May 5, 2020
State of IL

Governor J.B. Pritzker announced a five-phase, regional plan for reopening the state Tuesday.

State of Illinois

Illinois added 2,122 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, and logging 176 deaths in the same 24-hour period.

Harrisburg Hopes To Open Public Pool This Summer

May 5, 2020
Covid-19
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Harrisburg parks are open, but facilities remain closed from the stay at home order.

Harrisburg Park District Executive Director Blake Emery says ball leagues and the opening of the city pool can’t happen at least until the end of May

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Governor JB Pritzker holds a press briefing on the state’s current response and action plan for managing COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in Illinois.

The live stream will begin at 2:30 p.m.

Illinois students have been e-learning for more than a month now. Reliable internet connectivity is still one of the major hurdles for many rural districts.

Alex Moore is the superintendent at Montmorency. They’re a K-8 district in Whiteside County with around 230 students.

“On a good day, I get four megabytes per second download speed, so I knew that was going to be an issue,” he said. “About half of our families probably have decent internet.”

Even that “good day” download speed doesn’t meet the FCC’s minimum recommendation for e-learning.

Governor J.B. Pritzker reiterated during a press briefing Monday that law enforcement can arrest anyone who is defying Illinois’ stay-at-home order. Meanwhile, two big tech companies are looking to develop contact tracing apps, but for now, the governor has nixed the idea for Illinois.

This story has been corrected to include an official response from DCFS.

A group of Illinois Department of Children and Family Services workers said the agency is failing to protect them from being exposed to the new coronavirus. The union representing those workers, meanwhile, is demanding more protections be put in place.

Brian Galecki, owner of Dumb Records in downtown Springfield, normally sells records and CDs, but since the pandemic hit, he’s been selling t-shirts online. He said his online sales have been strong.

“A big challenge in that still is that even with us doing well, we’re still going to be less than what we would be doing if our physical store is open,” Galecki said.

The American Red Cross is encouraging people who are healthy to donate blood.  Joe Zydlo  with the Red Cross says the demand for blood will increase for several  reasons. As restrictions are slowly being relaxed, area hospitals will be doing more elective surgeries, and will be needing more blood.  And, more drivers will be soon be on the road.  Zydlo assures the public that all proper safety steps are being taken at blood drives.  The Red Cross is only doing appointments only, no walk-ins will be allowed.  All donors are required to wear a face covering or a mask while at a drive and stay at least six feet away from other donors and staff.

The Red Cross recommends going online and making an appointment at red cross blood DOT org.  You can also call 1-800-RED-CROSS.

State of Illinois

The state of Illinois showed an increase in its COVID-19 cases on Monday, with a jump of 2,341 new patients. Forty-six people died in the last 24 hours, bringing the overall death toll to 2,662.

The Department of Public Health says there have been 63,840 cases of COVID-19 in Illinois. Ninety-seven of the state's 102 counties have reported at least one case of COVID-19.

LOCAL CASES:

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Governor JB Pritzker holds a press briefing on the state’s current response and action plan for managing COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in Illinois.

 The live stream will begin at 2:30 p.m.

State of Illinois

Illinois' Department of Public Health announced 2,994 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, on a day when a record number of tests were also performed.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker decried as hate-filled some of the signs that demostraters in Springfield and Chicago carried Friday to protest his stay-at-home order.

He addressed the issue at his daily briefing Saturday. Of the hundreds gathered at state buildings in Chicago and Springfield, including the state Capitol. Some carried signs with swastikas that said, HEIL PRITZKER.

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Getty Images

Governor JB Pritzker holds a press briefing on the state’s current response and action plan for managing COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in Illinois.

 The live stream will begin at 2:30 p.m.

State of Illinois

The state's total number of infections tops 58,500, and the death toll is more than 2,500.

The spokesman for the ACLU of Illinois says courts have ruled that laws can be set in the name of public health, which makes Gov. J.B. Pritzker s order on face coverings enforceable. 

Ed Yohnka said precedent has been set with vaccination requirements at public schools being imposed because they are considered to be for the good of public health.

debate graphic
Getty Images

Governor JB Pritzker holds a press briefing on the state’s current response and action plan for managing COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in Illinois.

The live stream will begin at 2:30 p.m.

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