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WGLT's reporting on the coronavirus pandemic, which began in McLean County in March 2020.

McLean County At 'Critical Point' In COVID Response As Region Sees Negative Trends

COVID-19 test reflected in sunglasses
Sakchai Lalit
Health workers collecting a nasal swab from a woman are reflected on the sunglasses.

McLean County health officials announced nine new coronavirus cases on Friday as the county closes out a month in which its COVID-19 caseload nearly doubled. 
While the county’s count of active COVID-19 cases reaches a new record (86), hospitalizations (3) and the positivity rate (1.8%) remain unchanged.

McLean County COVID-19 data
Credit McLean County Health Department
The McLean County Health Department announced nine new cases on Friday.

According to data from the McLean County Health Department (MCHD), 412 people are considered recovered after completing their time in quarantine, while 83 people are isolating at home. Fifteen patients have died.

McLean County is part of a region that covers much of west central Illinois that has experienced a recent rise in positivity and hospitalization rates. Gov. JB Pritzker said during a visit to Peoria on Thursday the region could see additional county-by-county restrictions unless the trends reverse soon.

“In McLean County we are at a critical point in our response to the COVID pandemic,” said MCHD Administrator Jessica McKnight. “To keep our county moving forward and to keep our economy open, it is going to take a community effort. We all need to continue working together and doing what we can to protect our friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers." 

Peoria and LaSalle counties also are both included in Region 2 and are among 11 counties the Illinois Department of Public Health has designated at a warning level. Sangamon County was among seven added to the list on Friday.

McKnight said contact tracing has shown an increase in the number of contacts for each active case since the state moved into Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan in late June.

“Trends in McLean County reflect what is being seen across the state with many recent cases related to social gatherings and household contact to someone who is COVID positive,” McKnight said.

McLean County’s positivity rate has trended downward over the last several weeks. Its cumulative positivity rate since the start of the pandemic is 2.1% based on more than 24,000 tests.


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