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

McLean County To Expand COVID Vaccinations ‘Very Soon’

sign at vaccination clinic
Emily Bollinger
The McLean County Health Department said it plans to make Phase 1B Plus group eligible to receive COVID vaccines "very soon."

The McLean County Health Department plans to open more appointments for COVID vaccinations at 11 a.m. Thursday for two first-dose clinics.They will held March 18-19 at Grossinger Motors Arena in downtown Bloomington.

Currently, only people in Phases 1A and 1B are eligible for the vaccine at the health department clinics. That includes people 65 and older, health care workers and other essential employees. The department said in a statement it expects to expand to the Phase 1B+ population “very soon.”

That would enable people younger than 65 with underlying health conditions to get the vaccine.

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) reports 42,887 COVID vaccine doses have been put in people's arms in McLean County. Nearly 9% of the county’s population has received both vaccine doses. That trails the state rate of 9.8%.

New cases

Twenty-eight more McLean County residents have tested positive for the coronavirus since Wednesday, while hospitalizations increased.

McLean County COVID-19 data
Credit McLean County Health Department
The McLean County Health Department announced 28 new coronavirus cases on Thursday.

MCHD said 25 McLean County residents are hospitalized with COVID-19. That’s up from 23 over the last 24 hours. Ninety percent of Bloomington-Normal hospital beds are occupied, while 46% of intensive care beds are is use. That’s down from 69% on Wednesday and marks the lowest ICU occupancy since the hospitals started releasing that daily data in mid-November. 

MCHD reports 176 people are isolating at home with the virus while 14,365 have completed their time in quarantine and are considered recovered.

McLean County’s testing positivity rate over the last week inched upward to 2.3%, and the cumulative positivity rate remains 5.8%, based on more than 255,500 tests taken since the start of the pandemic.

The county has reported 175 COVID-related deaths since last March when the pandemic began.

Coronavirus In McLean County
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