Governor Pritzker Says Illinois Is Set To Release Their Full Reopening Plan This Week
As the Pritzker Administration looks to loosen COVID restrictions a year into the pandemic, his top doctor warns masks aren’t going away.
Currently, Illinois is in Phase 4 of the Governor's Restore Illinois plan. Phase 5, which allows the state to fully reopen, requires a widely available vaccine or highly effective treatment for coronavirus.
But now, Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike said there may be another step added to the state's five-phase reopening plan that could be announced "later this week."
During a state Senate Health Committee hearing Monday, Sen. Terri Bryant, a Republican from Murphysboro, asked Dr. Ezike when restrictions on gatherings would be lifted given the availability on coronavirus vaccines.
“I think we’re getting close,” Dr. Ezike said.
But, Dr. Ezike said the state needs the majority of seniors vaccinated, as well as a continued drop in COVID-related deaths.
Additionally, Dr. Ezike believes "masks have to continue to be a mainstay.”
More good news! Illinois, as much shit as give it, has been dominating the vaccine game the last few weeks. Our rolling 7-day average is now over 100,000 doses distributed and we even dolled out about 272,00 doses this previous Saturday alone. Here's what we've been doing in IL, per Bloomberg:
But the stat that means the most is this:
54% of seniors have received the vaccine as of 4 days ago. Figure it's gone up a few points since then. This whole last year I've gone crazy about how poorly we've handled this pandemic on both a micro and macro level because it never made sense to me that we shut down the world when the vaccine is largely not deadly for those who are younger than 50 really. Per The Illinois Dept. of Public Health's Website, nobody under 50 years old passed away due to COVID yesterday:
And that's the typical trend.
We always needed to protect the vulnerable and we didn't do that, but I guess it's whatever this point and we can't change the past. What we need to do is keep getting shots in arms of old people and we're doing that at a good clip. That's why you see hospitalizations and deaths plummeting even though we're gradually opening up.
Now NONE of this is to say we shouldn't have just been wide open all willy nilly. I'm not an asshole. I'm saying we did a dog shit job as both a state and country protecting those that actually needed to be protected. As a whole, COVID just isn't that big of a deal for the young and healthy and the young and healthy compose the majority of our population. COVID is here to stay. We'll never fully wipe it off the face of the earth. More shots in more arms of people is the name of the game and we're finally doing that at what is an acceptable rate, in my opinion. Thank god because we got baseball games to get to and concert venues to pack this summer.
Go White Sox. Can't wait until we get through this bullshit. Almost there…