An increase in hospitalizations and ICU usage has Gov. J.B. Pritzker issuing an indoor mask mandate for the state. It takes effect starting today (Aug. 30) and goes until further notice for any indoor space including all medical facilities, schools, and businesses, no matter if you’ve had the COVID-19 vaccine or not.
Pritzker says this is another effort to keep hospitals from filling up.
Region 5 in Southern Illinois had just one available bed open in an ICU late last week. No region in Illinois has more than 25 percent of ICU beds open for new patients, although not all ICU beds are filled with COVID-19 patients. The governor’s order also requires all teachers and staff at Illinois public schools and colleges to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or face weekly testing. Vaccine clinics continue around the region through county health departments, and many pharmacies and doctor’s offices also have the vaccine.