CDPH COVID-19 Update: Chicago and Cook County Remain at High COVID Community Level
CDPH strongly recommends masking in public indoor spaces
COVID-19 Joint Information Center email@example.com
CHICAGO – Chicago and suburban Cook County remain in the High COVID-19 Community Level based on the latest data update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) continues to strongly urge everyone to wear masks in indoor public settings, stay up to date on COVID-19 vaccines including all recommended boosters, and avoid non-essential indoor gatherings for people who are at high risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19.
As a reminder, everyone aged 5 and older should receive a booster dose five months after their initial vaccination. People aged 50 and above, and those 12 and above with compromised immune systems, should also receive a second booster, four months after their first booster. Find more information about boosters on CDPH’s website.
Over 30 percent of the U.S. is now at a Medium or High COVID Community Level, up from about 28 percent last week. However, the number of counties at a High level has dropped slightly from last week, from 250 to 241. A total of 19 of Illinois’ 102 counties are now at a High Level. Most of these counties are in one of two clusters: one in central Illinois and another along the northern border of the state, east to Lake Michigan and south to Will County. This is up from 15 last week.
The CDC determines COVID-19 Community Levels as Low, Medium, or High, based on the number of new local COVID-19 cases, regional COVID-19 hospital admissions, and COVID-19 hospital capacity in the prior week. The CDC’s measurement of hospitalization data for Community Levels reflects the burden on the whole federally defined Health Service Area, which includes Cook, Lake, DuPage, and McHenry Counties.
When the CDC updates its COVID-19 Community Levels national map each week (typically on Thursday evenings), City of Chicago and suburban Cook County data are combined into one weekly case metric for Cook County. Cook County (combining Chicago and suburban Cook data) counted 270 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents over the past seven days, which down significantly from last week (324).
CDPH continues to track and report COVID-19 hospital burden specifically for Chicago hospitals every day on its dashboard and uses this local hospital data to make further mitigation decisions. Visit chi.gov/coviddash for the Chicago COVID-19 daily data dashboard.
COVID-19 Community Levels in U.S. by County
|Community Level||Number of Counties||Percent of Counties||% Change from Prior Week|
ALL travelers should check the CDC map so they know whether the areas they are traveling to are at a Low, Medium, or High COVID-19 Community Level. Anyone traveling to a part of the country at Medium or High Level is urged to take appropriate precautions.
- If areas are Low Level (green), no additional action must be taken. Continue to follow standard guidance related to travel and up-to-date vaccination.
- If the areas are Medium Level (yellow), CDPH recommends individuals wear a mask in indoor public places.
- If the areas are High Level (orange):
- Wear a mask in indoor public places.
- Travelers who are age 5 or older who are not up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines are advised to avoid travel to High Level counties.
- Unvaccinated Chicagoans age 5 or older who travel to High Level counties are advised to follow CDC guidance upon returning to Chicago:
- Stay home and quarantine for 5 days after travel
- Take a COVID test 3-5 days after return – if it is positive, stay home and follow CDC guidance.
- ALL travelers are also advised to:
- Ensure you are up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccines (including boosters) before any planned travel.
- Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.
- Consider packing an at-home COVID test in case you develop symptoms while traveling.
- Bring a mask with you. Masks may be required by individual airports, airlines, and public transit agencies. Businesses may also still choose to require masks.