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Four Southern 7 counties return to orange warning level for COVID-19

Four counties in the Southern Seven Health Department region have returned to the orange...
Four counties in the Southern Seven Health Department region have returned to the orange warning level for COVID-19 risk.(KFYR)
Published: Nov. 12, 2021 at 3:41 PM CST
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SOUTHERN Ill. (KFVS) - Four counties in the Southern Seven Health Department region have returned to the orange warning level for COVID-19 risk.

As of Friday, November 12, the returning counties include Alexander, Johnson, Massac, and Union.

According to the Southern Seven Health Department (S7HD), the amount of new cases per 100,000 people, test positivity percentage metrics, and declining ICU bed availability at area hospitals are causing the elevated risk levels.

“The number of available ICU beds in the Southern Seven region has dropped once again and we’ve seen a slight increase in the number of positive cases,” said Nathan Ryder, COVID-19 community outreach coordinator for Southern Seven Health Department. “Areas in the northeastern U.S. and even in Michigan are beginning to see what is believed to be a fourth wave of COVID infections so this has the potential to continue increasing for us in the Southern Seven region as well.”

  • Alexander County had 182 potential new cases (based on 11 positive cases) per 100,000 reported. The test positivity percentage for the county was 2.7% out of 221 tests. ICU availability was 16.8%
  • Johnson County had 193 potential new cases (based on 24 positive cases) per 100,000 reported. The test positivity percentage for the county was 3.2% out of 753 tests. ICU availability was 16.8%
  • Massac County had 185 potential new cases (based on 26 positive cases) per 100,000 reported. The test positivity percentage for the county was 5.5% out of 451 tests. ICU availability was 16.8%
  • Union County had 113 potential new cases (based on 19 positive cases) per 100,000 reported. The test positivity percentage for the county was 1.5% out of 1298 tests. ICU availability was 16.8%

Hardin, Pope, and Pulaski counties remained stable this past week.

S7HD has been urging southern Illinoisans to get vaccinated against COVID-19. The COVID vaccines are proving to be effective in preventing people from becoming severely ill or requiring hospitalization. It’s also recommended to continue following the COVID-19 mitigation procedures we’re all familiar with to help prevent the spread of COVID-19: wear a mask, wash your hands frequently, and keep your distance especially in crowded situations or indoor environments. Children ages 5-11 are now able to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Booster shots for all three vaccines are also available for eligible adults.

According to Illinois Department of Public Health, an orange designation indicates warning signs of increased COVID-19 risk in the community. Residents are asked to remain vigilant to slow spread of the virus.

To view the IDPH county-level risk map, visit the County Level Covid-19 Risk Metrics website.

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