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Illinois expected to announce updated reopening plan this week

Few details have been released, but the state is expected to add a step between Phase 4 and Phase 5. One thing is for sure: masks will be involved

CHICAGO — Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker is expected to roll out a new reopening plan for the state this week, according to several media outlets in the Chicago area.

Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike made the announcement during a state Senate health committee meeting Monday. NBC Chicago cited the Chicago Tribute with Ezike commenting “there may be one more phase” between Phase 4 and Phase 5.

Few details have been released, but Ezike said the mask mandate will still be part of the plan.

“Masks have to continue to be a mainstay,” she said.

Pritzker and state health officials first rolled out the state’s Restore Illinois reopening plan last May

Illinois is currently in Phase 4, dubbed the “Revitalization” phase. The next phase marks the full reopening of the state, with some safety precautions still in place for Phase 5.

Vaccination rates in Illinois are increasing, and deaths and COVID-19 cases are decreasing, so state leaders appear ready to loosen restrictions a little more, without fully reopening the state.

Illinois’ COVID-19 vaccine dashboard Tuesday morning showed 4,102,810 total doses have been administered in the state with 1,524,765 people fully vaccinated. That amounts to about 12% of Illinois residents being fully vaccinated.

The state’s seven-day positivity rate is 2.2%.

Credit: KSDK

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