New weekly COVID cases reported at long-term care facilities down by 70%

Gov. Pritzker made an announcement on improving healthcare equity across Illinois Friday morning.

Video Transcript

JESSICA D'ONOFRIO: Yeah, [? Stacy and ?] [? Terrell, ?] Governor Pritzker will be here with health care leaders and lawmakers. And as you mentioned, he's planning on making an announcement on improving health care equity across Illinois. We expect to get those details on that plan within the next half hour. But some local medical experts are hoping that the governor will elaborate on how to get people vaccinated in a more efficient way.

Right now, government officials are targeting dozens of suburban communities with high infection rates and low vaccine uptake for some of those appointments that are still open at the United Center mass vaccination site. The highest ranking suburbs are clustered in the western and southern parts of Cook County. But if the governor is talking about equity, a doctor with Metro Infectious Disease Consultants, one of the largest infectious disease groups in the country, is looking for the governor to talk specifics on how to get shots to people at their homes, churches, and where they do their errands, saying many people who work two jobs and others may live in pharmacy deserts or have a hard time getting to places like hospitals or the United Center.

VISHNU CHUNDI: The science is clear on how to achieve equity. And that's to go to the people. Having it go to brick and mortar areas like hospitals is very difficult for poor people. A lot of them are working two jobs. A lot of them are between shifts. Their lives are different than people who work 9:00 to 5:00. And so to really achieve equity, you have to go to the churches. You have to go to the community areas.

JESSICA D'ONOFRIO: Meanwhile, vaccine supply continues to increase, but only modestly. CDC data shows Illinois and Chicago next week are set to receive from the federal government a combined 606,000 Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson doses, a bit shy of the 700,000, or 100,000 per day, the governor announced would be received by mid-March.

JB PRITZKER: My team is allocating what we receive from the federal government across the state as soon as we get it.

JESSICA D'ONOFRIO: Meanwhile, yesterday, the state set another vaccine record. I'm sure we will hear more about that from the governor when he holds this news conference here at [? Loreto ?] Hospital at 11:30.