CDPH COVID-19 Update: Cook County Remains in Low COVID-19 Community Level Based on CDC Metrics

October 21, 2022

CDPH Continues to urge all Chicagoans 5+ to get updated bivalent booster vaccine as soon as possible

COVID-19 Joint Information Center

CHICAGO – While COVID-19 levels in Chicago and Cook County remain relatively steady in the Low Community Level, according to the latest Community Level metrics released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) is warning Chicagoans to remain up to date with vaccinations, which means getting the new, updated vaccine, known as the bivalent booster, to protect themselves, their families and their communities as we head into colder months ahead.

Everyone age 5 and above who has previously been vaccinated against COVID-19 should now get the new vaccine, the bivalent booster, along with their annual flu shot,” said CDPH Commissioner Allison Arwady, M.D. “It doesn’t matter if you have already had boosters—this is a new vaccine that protects against the new virus strains. If you haven’t been vaccinated since Labor Day, you have not gotten this new shot and you are not up to date. I worry that our hard work to get to the Low Level will slide backwards if not enough people are staying current on their vaccines. Please, protect yourself and your family this holiday season: get your new COVID-19 vaccine now.”

As of October 19, more than 239,000 doses (up from 197,000 last week) of the updated booster have been administered to Chicagoans. Of those, 57 percent have gone to White/non-Latinx residents, 17 percent to Black/non-Latinx residents, 14 percent to Latinx residents, and 8 percent to Asian residents. In addition, 37 percent of doses have gone to residents age 60 or older. 

Overall, roughly 13 percent of eligible Chicagoans have received the updated vaccine so far.

The newly updated COVID-19 vaccine, known as a bivalent booster, is designed to better protect against the dominant Omicron subvariants BA.4/BA.5 that currently make up the majority of COVID-19 cases in Chicago. The updated vaccine has been designed specifically to protect against those variants, as well as to boost protection against severe outcomes from COVID-19. The bivalent booster generates a stronger immune response against current variants as well as the potential for broader protection against future variants. Details about the new bivalent booster vaccine can be found at

In addition to getting the bivalent booster, CDPH officials continue to urge all Chicagoans age 6 months and older to also get a flu shot to stay healthy and avoid serious illness.

The City is hosting two flu/COVID-19 vaccination clinics this Saturday, October 22 at Richard J. Daley College, 7500 S. Pulaski Rd., and Wilbur Wright College, 4300 N. Narragansett Ave. Both clinics are 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Registration is recommended, but walk-ins will be accommodated. Primary series COVID vaccines for Chicagoans 6 months and up will be offered, as well as bivalent boosters for those who are eligible. Additional flu/COVID-19 vaccination clinics at City College locations will be held throughout the fall.

In addition, CDPH has scheduled dozens of mobile vaccination events in the coming weeks to administer bivalent booster vaccines and flu vaccines for high-risk populations such as senior centers, Chicago Housing Authority facilities and other congregate living settings, as well as general vaccination events all over the City in partnership with aldermen and community and religious organizations. Residents can find out where to get the updated vaccine at or by calling the City at (312) 746-4835.

COVID-19 By the Numbers

The number of new laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases per 100,000 population in the past 7 days across Cook County was 72 (82 last week), and the number of new weekly hospital admissions per 100,000 population was 8.2 (7.7 last week). The percentage of staffed inpatient beds in Cook County in use by patients with confirmed COVID-19 was 3.2 percent (3.2 percent last week).

The City’s COVID-19 case rate per 100,000 population is 83 (94 last week), and the number of new weekly hospital admissions per 100,000 population is 4.2 (5.7 last week). The percentage of hospital beds occupied by patients with COVID-19 is 3.1 percent (3.2 percent last week).

Based on the latest data from CDC, Cook County levels are as follows.


New Cases (per 100,000 people in last 7 days)

New COVID-19 admissions per 100,000 population (7-day total)

Proportion of staffed inpatient beds occupied by COVID-19 patients (7-day average)

  [GOAL is <200] [GOAL is <10] [GOAL is <10%]
City of Chicago 83 4.2 3.1%
Cook County (including City of Chicago) 72 8.2 3.2%
Cook County metrics are calculated by the CDC and posted on the CDC Community Levels website (data as of 10/20/2022).

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 Levels were developed to help communities decide what prevention steps to take based on the latest local COVID-19 data.

When the CDC updates its COVID-19 Community Levels national map each week, the City of Chicago and suburban Cook County data are combined into one weekly case metric for Cook County. Hospitalization data, in contrast, reflect a burden on the whole federally defined Health Service Area, which includes hospitals in Cook, Lake, DuPage, and McHenry counties.

CDPH also 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 for the Chicago COVID-19 daily data dashboard.

COVID-19 Community Levels in the U.S. by County

Nationwide, cases continue to decline, with less than two percent of U.S. counties at the High Level and 81 percent at the Low Level. In Illinois, however, Community Levels are starting to creep up: three of the state’s 102 counties are at a High COVID-19 Level (none last week), and 23 are Medium (16 last week). The remainder are Low. There are still concentrated areas of the U.S. in the High and Medium Levels, and travelers should be aware of whether areas they are visiting are Low, Medium, or High risk for COVID-19 by checking the CDC’s map, and take proper precautions, which should include reviewing CDPH’s travel guidance.

  Community Level Number of Counties Percent of Counties % Change from Prior Week

(67 last week)

1.43% -0.65%

(585 last week)

17.55% -0.62%

(2,586 last week)

81.02% 1.27%

For additional COVID-19 news, see CDPH’s weekly update or visit