Illinois reports 11,632 new COVID-19 cases, 37 deaths as officials warn of rising hospitalizations

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CHICAGO — Illinois health officials reported 11,632 new probable and confirmed COVID-19 cases as well as 37 additional coronavirus-related deaths Monday, while the availability of hospital beds in Will and Kankakee counties dropped below state limits amid a statewide rise in hospitalizations.

According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, 12.5% of tests performed from November 9-15 confirmed new COVID-19 cases, a slight decrease from the case positivity rate reported Sunday.

After climbing steadily for weeks, Illinois’ 7-day average of new COVID-19 cases has remained around 12,300 over the past few days, six times the level reported in early October. The state is also averaging more than 80 reported deaths over a 7-day period, near levels last reported in late May.

Speaking Monday, Governor JB Pritzker said healthcare workers across the state are working overtime and double shifts as rising COVID-19 hospitalizations surpass the peak seen in the spring.

“With nearly no mitigations in the states bordering us and no national strategy to reduce the spread, we’re in for a very difficult next few months,” Pritzker said. “That fact is more than a frightening backdrop, because it means there are no more healthcare workers to call in as reinforcements from other states.”

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(This story was originally published on November 17, 2020)

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