Cook County has registered its 13,000. coronavirus deaths, officials said Wednesday, calling it a “cruel milestone” coming as trailers are once again dispatched to hospitals.
Officials citing data from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office noted that 1,000 deaths were recorded in the past six weeks alone. Previously, it took more than three months for the county to grow from 11,000 deaths to 12,000.
“That [medical examiner’s office] confirmed 254 COVID-19 deaths in the week of December 27, 2021. These are the highest totals the MEO has seen since December 2020, months before the COVID-19 vaccine was widely available to residents, “the county said in a statement.
In response, the county’s Department of Emergency Management and Regional Security has again begun releasing trailers to the area’s hospitals “to help decompress their morgues if necessary.”
Of the county’s 13,000 deaths, nearly half have been reported in Chicago.
More than 80% of deaths occurred in people over the age of 60, with the oldest Cook County COVID-19 dying at 109 years of age. The youngest, however, was only 9 months old.
The news comes in the middle of the first week of a new county-wide vaccine mandate that requires proof of vaccination for those who want to eat at restaurants, drink in bars, work out in gyms and more.
It also comes amid a rise in omicron cases nationwide.
Nearly one in four reported COVID tests in the city of Chicago returns with positive results and continues with a rapid increase in the positivity rates in the city.
According to the latest information from the Chicago Department of Public Health, the city’s positivity per. December 30, the last date for which data is available due to delay time and other factors, at 23.6%, the highest rate reported since May 7, 2020.
That number represents a rapid increase in the city’s positivity rate over the past month. On December 7, the positivity rate in the city was 3.9%, and since that date, it has increased every day, according to officials.
Dr. Allison Arwady, commissioner of CDPH, says part of the increase in positivity rates has come due to the influx of home tests that have been performed, with these numbers not included in the test results because they are not sent to state-run laboratories.
On December 7, the city had an average of 958 new cases of COVID per. 100,000 inhabitants, and that number has increased by almost 380%, rising to 4,591 new cases of COVID per capita. 100,000 inhabitants per. December 30th.
These numbers come as test rates have dropped in the city. According to CDPH data, an average of 23,675 test results are returned to laboratories every day during the last week, a decrease of 41% from a week ago.
Still, Arwady says the city’s current average of between eight and nine deaths a day remains “much lower than we’ve seen earlier in the pandemic,” but still marks an increase from the two to three deaths a day the city experienced a few months ago. since. She added that much of the city’s recent increase in deaths has been among unvaccinated Chicago residents.