Illinois’ Region 6 moves to new resurgence mitigations

By Kendra Hennis 
At his press conference on Friday, Governor J.B. Pritzker declared that as of November 2, Region 6 of Illinois, including Champaign, Clark, Clay, Coles, Crawford, Cumberland, De Witt, Douglas, Edgar, Effingham, Fayette, Ford, Iroquois, Jasper, Lawrence, Macon, Moultrie, Piatt, Richland, Shelby and Vermillion counties, moves to new resurgence mitigations following an 8 percent average positivity rate over seven days throughout the region. It was stated in the July 15 Restore Illinois resurgence plan that “new mitigations will be applied if a region’s positivity rate averages greater than or equal to 8 percent for three consecutive days, or if a region experiences a sustained increase in the positivity rate (increases 7 out of 10 days) and sustained increase in hospital admissions for a COVID-19 like illness or reduction in hospital capacity and threatens surge capabilities (availability of ICU or med/surgical beds under 20 percent). If a region has exceeded IDPH criteria that trigger additional mitigations to combat a resurgence of COVID-19 and prevent uncontrollable spread, new measures are necessary to curtail further spread.” 

New mitigation regulations in Region 6 include:

Restaurants
* No indoor dining or bar service.

* Outside dining tables should be six feet apart.

* All outdoor dining closes at 11 p.m. 

* No standing or congregating indoors or outdoors while waiting for a table or exiting. 

* Reservations required for each party.

* No seating of multiple parties at one table. 

Bars
* No indoor service. 

* All outside service closes at 11 p.m. 

* No ordering, seating, or congregating at bar. 

* All bar patrons should be seated at tables outside. 

* Tables should be six feet apart. 

* No dancing or standing indoors. 

* No standing or congregating indoors or outdoors while waiting for a table or exiting. 

* Reservations required for each party.

* No seating of multiple parties at one table. 

Meetings, Social Events, Gatherings
* No party buses 

* Limit to less than 25 guests or 25 percent of overall room capacity.

* Gaming and casinos close at 11 p.m., are limited to 25 percent capacity, and must follow mitigation requirements for bars and restaurants, if applicable. 

As of November 2, the 7-day rolling average for test positivity in Douglas County was 13.9 percent. The Douglas County Health Department also announced an additional 18 cases of COVID-19 in Douglas County, bringing the total known confirmed cases to 894. The DCHD is currently monitoring 764 active and close contacts daily. The release notes that, “COVID-19 spreads differently, not like the flu. It is a novel virus and the majority of the community spread is from people who don’t look “ill”. The virus carries its highest viral load two days before symptoms. You cannot presume your friend, co-worker, server, cashier, teammate, etc. is not infecting you simply because they don’t have symptoms you can see. Carriers are most contagious 48 hours before symptoms and that’s only if they develop symptoms. Many spreading the virus don’t know that they are carrying or spreading it. The best way to help stop the spread of COVID-19 is by washing your hands for 20 seconds with soap throughout each day, watching to keep six feet of physical distance between yourself and others, and by wearing a face covering or mask.”

According to the Restore Illinois plan, “IDPH will continue to track the positivity rate in regions additional mitigations over a 14-day monitoring period to determine if mitigations can be relaxed, if additional mitigations are required, or if current mitigation should remain in place. If the positivity rate averages less than or equal to 6.5 percent over a three day period, the region will return to Phase 4 mitigations under the Restore Illinois Plan. If the positivity rate averages between 6.5 and 8 percent, IDPH will continue to monitor the region to determine if additional mitigations are needed. If the positivity rate averages greater than or equal to 8 percent after 14 days, more stringent mitigations can be applied to further reduce spread of the virus, which could include reducing capacity on organized group recreation, fitness, or other activities supported by local contact tracing data and temporary suspension of activities.” 

Find the latest regional metrics at www.dph.illinois.gov/regionmetrics. More information can also be found at www.dph.illinois.gov.

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