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COVID Hospitalizations, Chicago Wastewater – NBC Chicago

Hospitalizations in the U.S. are climbing once again, raising the risks for senior and those with underlying conditions.

Here’s what you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic across Illinois today.

Hospitalizations Signal Rising COVID-19 Risk for US Seniors

Coronavirus-related hospital admissions are climbing again in the United States, with older adults a growing share of U.S. deaths and less than half of nursing home residents up to date on COVID-19 vaccinations.

These alarming signs portend a difficult winter for seniors.

One troubling indicator for seniors: Hospitalizations for people with COVID-19 rose by more than 30% in two weeks. Much of the increase is driven by older people and those with existing health problems, said Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The numbers include everyone testing positive, no matter why they are admitted.

Read more here.

There’s a Concerning Amount of COVID in Chicago Wastewater Right Now. Here’s What That Could Signal

As COVID-19 cases continue to spike across Illinois, a concerning sign in Chicago shows that the increase is likely to continue in the coming weeks.

According to Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady, elevated levels of COVID-19 have been detected in the city’s wastewater in recent weeks.

“Our wastewater sampling is actually at a high concern and that is consistent with what we’re seeing across the country,” Arwady said earlier this week, reflecting on the rise in cases that has affected much of the U.S.

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Should You Wear a Mask Right Now? Here’s What Experts Suggest and What Chicago’s Top Doc is Doing

COVID cases have risen dramatically in parts of the country since Thanksgiving, leading some health agencies to recommend that people wear face masks once again.

Such recommendations are in place in approximately 9% of the country, which is currently listed at “high” COVID-19 community level status, according to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Because of increases in metrics such as case numbers and hospitalizations, masks are recommended in those areas.

Read more here.

Masks Recommended in 29 Illinois Counties With ‘High’ COVID Community Level Status

Masks are encouraged in 29 out of Illinois’ 102 counties that have been raised to “high” COVID-19 community level status as a result of an uptick in weekly metrics, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The latest CDC data showed a total of 74 counties, which accounts for nearly 73% of Illinois, are at an elevated status of either “medium” or “high.” In all, 29 counties are listed at “high” status compared to 12 from the week prior, data showed. Forty five are deemed in the “medium” category, marking a decline from 51 counties a week earlier.

Read more here.

74 Illinois Counties at Elevated Community Level of COVID-19 as Cases Jump Across the State

COVID-19 cases have significantly risen across Illinois within the past week, with 74 counties now at an elevated community level of the virus. Twenty-nine of the 74 counties are now at a “high” community level of COVID-19, up from 12 last week, according to CDC data.

All counties in the Chicago metropolitan area are now at a “medium” COVID-19 community level, where masks are recommended for those who are immunocompromised or at high risk for severe disease. Overall, 45 Illinois counties are at that same level.

Read more here.

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