This post is for news on local response to the coronavirus in Springfield and Central Illinois.
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The Illinois Department of Public Health Sunday announced 1,656 more people tested postive for COVID-19, with 57 additional deaths. The state's total cases is 77,741, including many who have recovered. Since the pandemic began, 3,406 people have died.
Illinois remains under a stay-at-home order to stem the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus. The Illinois Department of Public Health tracks the number of confirmed cases and deaths related to the disease, as well as hospital capacity.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there is no vaccine to prevent the disease. The CDC has tips on how to protect yourself.
May 10, 6:45 p.m.
Sangamon County Public Health announced three more individuals tested postive as of Sunday, bringing the county's total to 270 with 24 deaths. Eight residents with COVID-19 are hospitalized.
Macoupin County reports 38 total cases since the pandemic began. Nine of those are considered active, with three individuals hospitalized. There has been one death in the county.
Four more people in Macon County are confirmed to have COVID-19. The county's total stands at 145.
May 9, 5:30 p.m.
One New COVID-19 Death in Sangamon County
Saturday evening, the Sangamon County Department of Public Health announced one new death from the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Sangamon County. The patient was a female in her 90’s who tested positive for the disease on April 23rd. She was an inpatient at HSHS St.John’s Hospital.
The Department also announced eight new confirmed-positive cases. The total number of Sangamon County residents with confirmed cases is 267, including 24 deaths. Currently, eight confirmed positive Sangamon County residents are hospitalized.
May 9, 4:00 p.m.
Total Number of COVID-19 Tests in Illinois Surpasses 400,000
Saturday, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) announced 2,325 new cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Illinois, including 111 additional deaths.
Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 76,085 confirmed cases, including a total of 3,349 deaths, in 98 counties in Illinois. The age of cases ranges from younger than one to older than 100 years. Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have processed 16,617 specimens for a total of 416,331 tests conducted in Illinois.
May 8, 6:15 PM
UIS Offers COVID-19 Update
University Chancellor Susan Koch said Friday a number of virtual commencement celebrations will take place over the weekend for the more than 1,000 students slated to graduate this year. Graduates are encouraged to toon in at noon Saturday to the university's social media channels or the #UIS20 Graduate Celebration website.
For those who remain on campus, "Move-out dates for students who remained on campus for Spring 2020 are noon May 9 for residence hall residents and noon May 10 for apartment/townhome residents. If a student needs to remain on campus beyond these dates, they should make a request for a Late Stay with their RD via email. Late Stays are allowed to stay up until May 15."
Koch said UIS has also been given $865,000 in emergency grant funding for Spring 2020 students through the federal CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund. The funding will be provided as "direct grants to qualifying students, up to $1,000, for pandemic-related expenses associated with their educational experience, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, transportation and child care."
May 8, 6:10 PM
Memorial Closes Decatur Respitory Clinic
From a statement: "A respiratory screening clinic that has operated at Decatur Memorial Hospital’s ExpressCare East since March 19 closed Friday."
"Going forward, the clinic at 4455 U.S. Route 36 East will serve only patients needing COVID-19 testing as they prepare for surgical procedures at Decatur Memorial Hospital."
May 8, 6 PM
Four More Villas Residents Have Died, Three Among Additional New Cases
Sangamon County health officials announced four new deaths of elderly residents at The Villas Senior Care Community in Sherman Friday. 104 people have tested positive for COVID-19 there, and nineteen have died.
In total, public health workers said nine more people tested positive for COVID-19 in Sangamon County as of Friday, three of which are residents at The Villas. 3,124 tests have been completed.
May 8, 3:30 PM
Macon County Reports More COVID-19 Cases
From the county's crisis communication team: “Thus far, 1,369 tests have been performed in Macon County. Since yesterday’s press release, we have had six newly-confirmed cases of COVID-19. Therefore, our overall number is 141 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Macon County.”
May 8, 3 PM
Manar Suggests Remote Wi-Fi Locations For Disadvantaged Students
State Sen. Andy Manar, who has been a point person for the Illinois Senate Democrats on education, said Friday students who cannot access Wi-Fi for remote learning should use one of nearly 400 free Wi-Fi access points the state is providing.
“A high-quality remote learning experience demands reliable internet access for every student,” Manar said. “While teachers statewide conduct full digital lessons, there are students who have yet to begin e-learning since their schools closed because they don’t have internet access.
A full map of the access points can be found here.
May 8, 2:40 PM
3,200+ Illinoisans Dead So Far Fron COVID-19
The Illinois Department of Public health reported an additional 130 deaths from the new coronavirus Friday, bringing the state wide total so far to 3241. 98 counties have now reported at least one case of COVID-19.
Nearly 400,000 tests have been performed by public health officials so far. 14% of those tests overall are coming back positive.
May 8, 12 p.m.
Sangamon County Fair Postponed
The 2020 Sangamon County Fair has been postponed. Scheduled grandstand entertainment for the June dates is in the process of being rescheduled for next year's fair, which will be held from June 16-20, 2021. Tickets for grandstand entertainment that were purchased in advance will be valid for the 2021 dates or a refund may be requested. All the details can be found at www.sangcofair.com. From a press release, "The Sangamon County Fair Board has planned a modified fair for October 2nd and 3rd of this year, which will include the Swyear Carnival, a Demolition Derby, great local bands in the Miller Pavilion, food vendors, a talent show, and general fair entries. We hope to salvage some aspect of a fair for you in October."
May 7, 6 p.m.
HSHS St. Johns Opening Up Elective Procedures
In accordance with Governor J.B. Pritzker announcement of a modified Stay-At-Home order through May that allows certain elective surgeries for non-life-threatening conditions, HSHS St. John’s Hospital will be resuming elective surgeries beginning May 11.
Those who had previously scheduled surgical procedures that were delayed due to the Illinois Stay-at-Home order during April will be contacted by their surgeon’s office to reschedule their surgery in upcoming weeks/months.
HSHS Illinois Division Chief Nursing Executive Allison Paul shared, “We have not offered non-emergent procedures because of the Governor’s order for several weeks and there is quite a backlog of cases at each of our HSHS Illinois hospitals. We encourage patients to contact their doctor for more information about when they can get their procedure scheduled in the coming weeks.”
May 7, 5:45 p.m.
Four New Deaths At Villas
The Sangamon County Department of Public Health reports four new deaths at The Villas Senior Care Community.
The new deaths include a female resident in her 90’s that tested positive for COVID-19 on 4/26, a female resident in her 80’s that tested positive for COVID-19 on 4/28, a female resident in her 80’s that tested positive for COVID-19 on 4/25, and a male resident in his 70’s that tested positive for COVID-19 on 4/27.
They are also reporting two new positive cases at the facility.
Currently, four confirmed positive residents are hospitalized at HSHS St.Johns Hospital, and one confirmed positive resident is hospitalized at Memorial Medical Center. The total number of confirmed positives include 57 residents and 44 employees, including 15 deaths.
The total number of Sangamon County residents with confirmed cases is two hundred forty-eight, including nineteen deaths.
May 7, 4:15 p.m.
How To Re-Open Your Business Workshop
The University of Illinois Springfield Office of Economic Development and Innovation, College of Business and Management, College of Public Affairs and Administration and Innovate Springfield will host a free public webinar on how to prepare to reopen your business during COVID-19 from 12-1 p.m. Friday, May 8.
Participants are encouraged to register for the event , however registration is not required. Zoom video and call in connection information can be found on the registration page.
May 7, 3:30 p.m.
Macon County Update
The Macon County COVID-19 and Joint Crisis Communication Team reports the 15th death of a Macon County resident. A woman in her 50’s was the latest to die. The county had three newly confirmed cases. That makes for a total number of 135 cases.
May 7, 3:15 p.m.
Springfield Taking Input On COVID Funds
The City of Springfield is announcing that the public comment period is now open for residents to review and provide their thoughts and feedback to the amendment regarding the allocation of $799,000 of Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds for Springfield COVID-19 relief. To review the information, visit the city's website .
Residents may submit their comments through the website; via email to firstname.lastname@example.org; or through U.S. mail to the Office of Planning & Economic Development, 800 E. Monroe, 1st Floor, Springfield, IL 62701.
In addition, two virtual public hearings will take place. One will be hosted this evening, Thursday, May 7, at 5:00 p.m. Tonight's hearing will be broadcast live on Comcast Cable Channel 18 and streamed on the City's website. Due to COVID-19, the council chambers is closed to the public.
The next virtual hearing will take place on Thursday, May 14 at 5:00 p.m. To register to speak at this meeting, please email the city or call the Office of Planning & Economic Development at 217.789.2377 by 4:00 p.m. on May 14th.
May 7, 2:45 p.m.
138 Deaths Reported In Latest Statewide Report
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) today announced 2,641 new cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Illinois, including 138 additional deaths.
Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 70,873 cases, including 3,111 deaths, in 97 counties in Illinois. Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have processed 17,783 specimens for a total of 379,043.
One death was reported in Sangamon County and another in Macon County.
May 7, 1:30 p.m.
Memorial Health System To Resume Many Surgeries & Medical Visits
Memorial Health System, in accordance with guidelines from the Illinois Department of Public Health, on May 11 will begin resuming many surgeries and other medical procedures and visits that had been postponed during the initial stages of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“As always, the safety of our patients and caregivers is our first priority, and we are confident these new guidelines will protect everyone involved,” said Dr. Raj Govindaiah, chief medical officer for Memorial Health System.
All patients will be required to wear masks upon arriving at any Memorial Health System facility, and will undergo a health screening, including a temperature check, before entering.
May 7, 12:15 p.m.
Area Fair Cancelled-Some Events Postponed
The Western Illinois Fair Association has cancelled the Fair, scheduled June 24-28. A Facebook post says they hope to reschedule some of the events at the fairgrounds in Griggsville.
If state guidelines allow, the Fair plans to hold the Queen Pageant, School Bus Demolition Derby and the regulator Demolition Derby July 23-25. The Fair also says it hopes to bring carnival attractions sometime in the fall.
May 6, 6:47 p.m.
New Central Illinois Cases
Thirteen more residents of Sangamon County have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total to 241. Fifteen people have died from the disease. More than 2,700 people have been tested.
Ten residents are hospitalized at Memorial Medical Center and HSHS St. John’s Hospital.
In Macon County, health officials report five newly confirmed COVID-19 cases, for a total of 132.
In Logan County, no new confirmed cases were reported Wednesday. Seven residents there have tested positive, and four have since recovered, according to the county health department.
Montgomery County also has one new confirmed case of COVID-19, for a total of 32 in the county, according to emergency response officials there. Twenty-eight residents have tested positive in Christian County, including four who have died. In the two counties combined, more than 1,000 people have been tested.
May 6, 6:30 p.m.
Governor Says State Fair ‘Highly Unlikely’
Under the governor’s reopening plan released Tuesday, gatherings of more than 50 people would not be allowed until a vaccine or proven treatment for COVID-19 is available. Public health experts agree that could be months or possibly years away.
When asked how that projection would affect the Illinois State Fair in August, Gov. J.B. Pritzker said it was “highly unlikely” the fair would be held this year. Still, with early research into the treatment remdesivir, Pritzker said it is possible.
“I hope there will be many others (treatments), and maybe by the time these larger events roll around, we might be able to have a treatment that’s very effective,” he said Wednesday. “And then I think there is the possibility.”
May 6, 4:51 p.m.
Sangamon County Property Tax Update
Property tax bills for Sangamon County residents are expected to hit mailboxes the week of May 11, according to a news release from the county. First installments are due June 12, and the second on September 11.
However, no late fees will be assessed on the first installment if paid before September 11, after the Sangamon County Board voted to waive the fees due to the economic impact of the pandemic on residents.
Under the stay-at-home order, the Sangamon County Treasurer’s office is closed, and no in-person payments may be made. Payments may be made online, by mail to Sangamon County Treasurer, PO Box 19400, Springfield, IL 62794, or at any INB drive-through.
May 6, 4 p.m.
Four More Staff At The Villas East Test Positive For COVID-19
One employee in her teens at The Villas Senior Care Community in Sherman, another in her 40s and two employees in their 50s tested positive for COVID-19, according to a news release from the Sangamon County Department of Public Health.
Ninety-nine people, including 55 residents and 44 staff members at the long-term care facility have confirmed cases since an outbreak there was identified two weeks ago. Eleven people have died, and eight residents are currently hospitalized in Springfield.
May 6, 2:47 p.m.
2,270 New Confirmed Cases In Illinois
The Illinois Department of Public Health reports 2,270 newly confirmed cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to more than 68,000 across the state.
An additional 136 people have died from the disease, bringing the death toll to 2,974.
Nearly 15,000 tests have been processed in the last day, for a total of more then 361,000 tests done statewide.
May 6, 12:15 p.m.
Millikin University To Host Virtual Graduation
Millikin University in Decatur will host a graduation ceremony for spring 2020 graduates on Facebook Live on Sunday, March 17 at 2 p.m.
The university canceled its in-person ceremony after restrictions were put in place to stem the spread of the new coronavirus.
Millikin President Dr. Patrick White will lead the ceremony, which will feature an acapella group of alumni and student speaker, Allen Brown, of Illiopolis, who is receiving his degree nursing and the recipient of the 2020 Dr. Jan Devore Award for Excellence in Contributions to Campus Life.
The university is planning an in-person ceremony for 2020 graduates in December. More information is on its website.
May 5, 7:00 p.m.
Sangamon County COVID-19 Update
The Sangamon County Department of Public Health announced eight new confirmed COVID-19 cases, including one new death - a woman in her 70s, a resident at The Villas Senior Care Community.
The total number of Sangamon County residents with confirmed cases is 228, including 15 deaths.
Currently, seven Sangamon County residents are hospitalized at HSHS St. Johns Hospital, and four at Memorial Medical Center.
May 5, 6:00 p.m.
Regional Reopening Plan For Illinois
Gov. J.B. outlined a plan to gradually reopen Illinois' economy by region in five phases. Each stage will progressively loosen restrictions as certain public health thresholds are reached.
Pritzker and public health experts are signaling some regions may reopen faster than others.
The plan is also based on regional healthcare availability, recognizing the distinct impact COVID-19 has had on different regions of the state. For those purposes, the state has established four regions: northeast Illinois; north-central Illinois; central Illinois; and southern Illinois.
An outline of the Restore Illinois plan can be found here .
New Death At The Villas Senior Care Community
The Sangamon County Department of Public Health reports one new death of a resident from The Villas Senior Care Community in Sherman. The woman in her 70’s was hospitalized at HSHS St. John’ Hospital.
Nine residents with confirmed coronavirus cases are hospitalized at HSHS St. John’s Hospital and Memorial Medical Center.
The 95 confirmed cases include 45 residents and 40 staff members, for a total of 95 cases, including 11 deaths.
Overall in Sangamon County Tuesday, eight more individuals were confirmed to have COVID-19.
May 5, 3:30 p.m.
Over 2,800 Deaths From COVID-19 In Illinois
Illinois saw its largest one-day number of deaths so far today with 176 deaths, bringing the state's total to 2,838 deaths. The Illinois Department of Public Health also reports 2,122 new cases, bringing the total confirmed cases to 65,962.
COVID-19 has been found in 97 counties in Illinois. The age of cases ranges from younger than one to older than 100 years. Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have processed 13,139 specimens for a total of 346,286.
Central Illinois COVID-19 Update
Christian County has no new cases, leaving its total at 28, including one death, according to a Facebook post from its emergency management agency. Montgomery County reports one new case, bringing its total to 30, including one death. The Christian-Montgomery Emergency Management Agency has decided to reduce its coronavirus updates from daily to weekly, according to the post.
The total number of confirmed positive cases in Logan County is seven, including four individuals who have recovered. Test results are pending for two patients at Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital, and one positive individual from Mason County is currently hospitalized there.
Macon County reports one new death from COVID-19, bringing the total to 14 in the county. The woman in her 70s was a resident at Fair Havens long-term care facility in Decatur. The county also reported two newly confirmed cases, bringing the total to 127.
May 5, 1:45 p.m.
Hy-Vee Limits Meat Purchases For Customers
According to a press release sent out by the company, effective Wednesday May 6, Hy-Vee will limit meat purchase at all of its locations. Each customer will be limited to four packages of a combination of fresh beef, ground beef, pork and chicken when checkout.
The new limit stems from a worker shortage at plants, as well as an increase in meat sales.
May 4, 4:40 p.m.
Tenth Resident At The Villas Dies
A female resident of The Villas Senior Care Community in her 100s has died after being diagnosed with COVID-19. That’s according to the Sangamon County Department of Public Health. The woman was hospitalized at HSHS St. John’s Hospital.
Ninety five people have tested positive at The Villas, including 55 residents and 40 staff members.
Overall in Sangamon County Monday, fourteen more people were confirmed to have COVID-19 raising the total to 222 with 14 deaths.
May 4, 4:05 p.m.
Updates From Area Counties
The first COVID-19 death has been reported in Macoupin County. The county's health department said a woman in her 40s. died as a result of the coronavirus disease. Overall, there have been 33 residents identified in Macopuin County with 27 recovered.
On Monday, Macon County announced three additional people with COVID-19, bringing the total to 125 since the pandemic began.
Morgan County reported two more people tested positive. Both individuals are isolating and recovering at home. The county's total is now 26 cases.
May 4, 2:50 p.m.
Springfield Drive-In To Open
The Route 66 Drive-In Theater plans to open May 8 for the weekend. More nights might be added. A social media post indicates tickets will be sold online at the website. Vehicles will be allowed in every other spot to enforce social distancing. Concessions will be done through an app with pickup at the window. The playground will be closed. A single feature is planned to limit restroom use.