IDPH Aligning with New CDC Mask Recommendations

By Jeremy Coumbes on July 27, 2021 at 4:15pm

The Illinois Department of Public Health has announced it is fully adopting the newly updated CDC masking recommendations.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reversed its previous course this morning, now recommending that everyone, including fully vaccinated individuals, wear a mask in public indoor settings in areas with substantial and high transmission.

The CDC is also recommending universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status.

IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike said this afternoon that “Cases and hospitalizations due to COVID-19 both continue to increase, overwhelmingly among the unvaccinated, but the risk is greater for everyone if we do not stop the ongoing spread of the virus and the Delta variant.”

IDPH officials say CDC data shows the Delta variant is much more contagious, spreading more than twice as easily from one person to another compared to other strains.

According to the CDC, the Delta variant is causing some vaccine breakthrough infections, but even so, most breakthrough infections are mild, and the vaccines are preventing severe illness, hospitalization, and death.

IDPH is advising that areas of substantial transmission are considered by CDC to be those with 50 to 99 cases per 100,000 people over a 7-day period.

While areas of high transmission are considered to be those with more than 100 cases per 100,000 people over a 7-day period.

As of Friday, Morgan County is ranked at 85 cases per one hundred thousand, with a test positivity rate that is down compared to the last week at 4.8%.