By Jim Hagerty
SPRINGFIELD – There are 330 new cases of COVID-19 in Illinois, including a new case in Winnebago County, health officials reported Wednesday, March 25.
The local case is a resident in their 70s, the eight person to test positive in Winnebago County since March 15. Since that date, a teen, two people in their 20s, two in their 30s, one in their 40s, one in their 60s have also tested positive.
There are now 14 confirmed cases in the northern Illinois region.
As of this report, there are 1,865 cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, statewide. Nineteen people have died, including three patients announced Wednesday: a Kane County man in his 90s, a Cook County man in his 60s, and a Will County woman in her 50s. The disease has now been confirmed in 35 Illinois counties. Around 73% of the state’s cases are in Cook County.
“Unfortunately, the pandemic in the United States and here in Illinois will get worse before it gets better,” Illinois Department of Public Health Dr. Ngozi Ezike said. “We understand that. “We will continue to see more cases in all settings.”
One of the most common settings has been nursing homes, where clusters of seniors–the most vulnerable to coronavirus–have been infected. That induces a DuPage County facility where 40 people have tested positive and one person has died. Ezike said the state is working professionals on how to mitigate the spread of the virus at those care centers.
“We are working tirelessly with facilities on infection control practices, individual and group monitoring, isolation and quarantine and health and medical care,” Ezike said. “But, we will continue to see cases continue to grow, which is why it is so important that we all take action to reduce the number of people who are infected and shorten the duration of this pandemic.”
Officials also reported Wednesday that two correctional officers and one inmate at Stateville Correctional Center, have tested positive. The officers are recovering at home while the inmate is isolated at a hospital. Those who have been identified as potentially exposed at prison have been quarantined; the facility is now on a 14-day lockdown.
For most people who are infected by the novel coronavirus, symptoms of COVID-19 are flu-like and can be managed at home. For seniors and those with preexisting conditions or comprised immune systems, the disease can be critical.