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McLean County shatters more COVID records as all intensive care beds are filled

microscopic image of COVID-19
The McLean County Health Department reported a record 1,281 new coronavirus cases on Friday. The county's testing positivity rate is nearly 27% -- also a record high.

There are no intensive care beds available in Bloomington-Normal and 99% of all of hospital beds are full, according to Friday's daily COVID-19 update from the McLean County Health Department (MCHD).

This comes as McLean County shattered its records for COVID hospitalizations, daily coronavirus cases and testing positivity rate.

McLean County also reported two more COVID-related deaths, a woman in her 70s and a man in his 60s. There have been 315 COVID-related deaths in the county since the start of the pandemic.

McLean County Health Department COVID-19 data
McLean County Health Department
The McLean County Health Department reported 1,281 new coronavirus cases and two additional deaths on Friday.

Carle BroMenn and OSF St. Joseph medical centers reported they have 68 COVID patients under their care, while 46 McLean County residents are in the hospital with COVID.

The county reported 1,281 daily coronavirus cases, breaking its previous high of 1,032 set on Wednesday. The seven-day testing positivity rate soared to a record 26.8%. The county has had 4,572 new cases since Jan. 1, according to data provided by MCHD and compiled by WGLT.

The county indicated 5,213 people are isolating at home.

Data from MCHD show 34,958 coronavirus cases since March 2020, while 29,384 people have completed their time in quarantine and are considered recovered.

According to data from the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), 58.5% of McLean County residents are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Contact tracers

Now that the state has taken over most COVID-19 contact tracing from local departments, McLean County is shifting some staff to other pandemic-related work.

MCHD administrator Jessica McKnight said the county now generally handles only outbreaks in schools and other congregant settings. McKnight said the county's 15 contact tracers are now more broadly defined as pandemic response workers.

“We are focusing still on clusters and outbreaks of cases and also looking at how do we expand testing and mass vaccination and resource coordination,” McKnight said.

She said those contract tracers are under contract with the county through May. They are paid for by federal COVID funding.

People who test positive for the coronavirus get a text from IDPH that allows them to opt into a case investigation. The message also comes with a link that describes what someone should do after they test positive, including going into quarantine and notifying close contacts.

McKnight said people will have to opt in if they need official certification for their employer that they have completed their time in quarantine.

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Eric Stock is the News Director at WGLT. You can contact Eric at ejstoc1@ilstu.edu.
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