Illinois Moves to Phase 5, Fully Re-Opens June 11

Illinois will move to a full reopening, also known as Phase 5, the final phase of the Restore Illinois plan, on Friday, June 11, 2021. On Friday, the state will eliminate all capacity limits on businesses, large-scale events, conventions, amusement parks, and all other venues. Mask requirements for vaccinated and non-vaccinated individuals continue to align with CDC guidelines.
 
The state reaches this point as it records the lowest number of people in the hospital with COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic, the lowest test positivity rate, and more than 68% of Illinois residents age 18 and over who have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

“A strong economy requires that people not only feel safe, but truly be safe, as they go about their lives as workers, neighbors, consumers, and friends – and thanks to the lifesaving power of vaccinations, that day is finally here for Illinois,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “I invite all Illinoisans to feel the hope and joy of this moment while also recognizing that this pandemic is still very present for the world at large – not to mention those here at home who have not been or cannot be vaccinated. As we take this next step forward, let’s do so with a renewed commitment to empathy, to community, and to making each day together count. You did it, Illinois.” 

Today the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is reporting 366 new confirmed and probable cases, 764 people in the hospital with COVID-19, and a test positivity rate of 1.3%.  These are some of the lowest COVID-19 statistics reported in Illinois to date. Additionally, IDPH is reporting 209 people with COVID-19 in the ICU and 103 people on ventilators.  These are also some of the lowest counts we’ve seen since the pandemic began. 

Currently, 11.9 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered to Illinois residents. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is reporting more than 68% of residents age 18 and older in Illinois have received at least one dose of vaccine and 51% of adults are fully vaccinated. Additionally, more than 88% of Illinois seniors have received at least one dose of vaccine. 

“It is a very exciting time as we reach the point where businesses can operate without capacity limits and we are seeing the return of large events we’ve enjoyed in the past,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike.  “However, it is important to remember that we are still in a world pandemic and not everyone has the protection of one of the safest and most effective vaccines ever.  Currently, there is not a vaccine authorized for children younger than 12 years and some adults have chosen not to be vaccinated.  For these reasons, it is important for unvaccinated people to continue to wear masks while in public and to socially distance.  The virus can continue to spread among unvaccinated individuals, which could lead to additional mutations and new, more virulent variants.”   

In accordance with guidance from the CDC, fully vaccinated people in Illinois can resume activities without wearing a mask except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.  

Consistent with CDC guidance, fully vaccinated and non-vaccinated persons are required to wear a face covering in certain situations including (1) on public transportation, planes, buses, trains, and in transportation hubs such as airports and train and bus stations; (2) in congregate facilities such as correctional facilities and homeless shelters; and (3) in health care settings.  Individuals in schools and day cares must also continue to wear face coverings per guidance issued by the Illinois State Board of EducationIllinois Department of Children and Family Services, and the Illinois Department of Public Health.

According to the CDC, it is critical that schools use and layer prevention strategies.  Schools providing in-person instruction should prioritize two prevention strategies:

1. Universal and correct use of masks should be required; and
2. Physical distancing should be maximized to the greatest extent possible.

Municipalities and businesses in most industries may choose to continue to implement public health mitigations as they deem appropriate, including requiring face coverings.  

To help businesses recover from the pandemic, the Governor, in partnership with the General Assembly, announced $1.5 billion in funding next year to support business grants, tourism, workforce, affordable housing, violence prevention, capital projects and other investments throughout Illinois.  This investment follows the $580 million invested last year for Business Interruption grants to aid businesses in pandemic impacted industries and childcare providers.

“Today’s advancement to Phase 5 is a significant milestone in our work to combat the virus and get the Illinois economy back on track. Through Governor Pritzker’s Restore Illinois plan, we have continued to lead on testing, vaccines and providing economic relief programs that are essential to supporting the return of workers and businesses amid the pandemic,” said Acting DCEO Director Sylvia Garcia. “Now, as businesses are set to fully reopen across the state, DCEO remains committed to implementing key programs that will not only reinvigorate our small businesses, workforce, and tourism, but that will build back our state’s economy stronger than ever before.”

Businesses and communities can learn more about Phase 5 recommended public health practices by visiting IDPH’s website.

What is in the COVID-19 Vaccine?

David Ruzic, Professor of Medicine at Carle Illinois College of Medicine at Urbana-Champaign explains what is in all three US-approved COVID-19 vaccines and how they work. He also discusses the risks of COVID- and the risks of the vaccines, and also covers what is not in the vaccines.

Give the video a look and share for anyone with questions on the COVID-19 vaccines.

Visit CUPHD’s website to find a vaccine clinic to get vaccinated.

Pop-Up Vaccine Clinic in Downtown Champaign

On Thursday, June 10, Big Grove Tavern will host a pop-up COVID-19 vaccine clinic in collaboration with Carle.

The clinic will be held from 11:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, a one-and-done opportunity to get vaccinated.

The event is free, open to the public, with no appointment needed.

Big Grove Tavern is located at One Main St., Champaign. Parking is available in the nearby lot and in the parking deck across the street.

Phase 5 Guidelines

Effective, June 11, all of Illinois will move into Phase 5 of the Restore Illinois Plan. The past fifteen months have shown great resilience and strength, as well as compliance from the Champaign County business community. Getting to Phase 5 is an accomplishment and our local business community as well as the public at large should be commended for their efforts to keep Champaign County safe.

As we move into Phase 5, it is important to recognize that we still need to be mindful of the risks of COVID-19 and use safety precautions as needed to reduce the spread. This includes vaccinations, available for all 12 and older.

Phase 5 guidance for businesses and venues have been released and can be seen below. Please continue to wear a mask if you are unvaccinated per CDC guidance. Find upcoming vaccination clinics in Champaign County here.

This guidance replaces the industry-specific guidance that the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity published as part of the state’s Restore Illinois plan. This guidance includes recommendations for all types of businesses and venues, customers, and employees in order to help maintain healthy environments and operations, as well as lower the risk of COVID-19 spread.

The following are recommended prevention strategies that recognize that while the state of Illinois has made substantial progress in vaccinating its residents, a number of individuals remain ineligible or have not yet chosen to be vaccinated. Consistent use of prevention strategies will help reduce the spread of COVID-19 and protect people who are not fully vaccinated, including customers, employees, and their families. As always, businesses and local municipalities may choose to implement additional prevention strategies as they deem appropriate.

  • COVID-19 vaccines are safe, effective, and widely available across Illinois. Everyone aged 12 years and older should be vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as possible to keep from getting and/or spreading COVID-19.
  • For businesses and venues where everyone present is fully vaccinated, the state does not require face coverings and social distancing in both indoor and outdoor settings. Businesses and municipalities are permitted to continue requiring face coverings and social distancing as they deem appropriate.
  • For indoor businesses and venues where everyone present is not fully vaccinated, unvaccinated persons should wear a face covering and maintain six feet social distance. Businesses and venues may continue to require face coverings and/or social distancing. At outdoor businesses and venues, unvaccinated persons may choose not to wear a face covering when able to maintain a six-foot social distance while outdoors, unless required to do so by a business or municipality.
  • Although people who are fully vaccinated are not required to wear a face covering under state guidance, businesses and venues should be supportive of customers and employees who choose to wear a face covering.
  • Persons who are immunocompromised should consider wearing face coverings when in settings where others may not be fully vaccinated.
  • All unvaccinated persons should wear face coverings in crowded settings, both indoors and outdoors, especially when youth are present. See CDC guidance for further information.
  • There are limited circumstances and settings where all individuals, including those who are fully vaccinated, must continue to wear a mask in accordance with CDC guidance: (1) on public transportation, (2) in congregate facilities, (3) in health care settings, and where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.
  • Individuals in schools, day care settings, and educational institutions should continue to follow separate guidance issued by the Illinois State Board of Education, Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, and Illinois Department of Public Health.
  • All businesses and venues should support social distancing to the extent possible, especially in indoor settings. Businesses and venues should apply best practices in managing distancing at such places as concessions/counters, public restrooms, and lines/queuing.
  • This guidance will be updated as the CDC releases new recommendations and is meant to supplement any federal or local guidance, safety laws, rules, regulations or business safety policies that may expressly require a face covering and/or social distancing.
  • Continue to consult the CDC and IDPH websites for updated resources, guidelines, and rules related to COVID-19 safety.

Upcoming Vaccination Clinics for June 11-20

In collaboration with CUPHD, there will be several walk-in clinics for the COVID-19 vaccine, with convenient times and locations. Vaccines are free and no appointment or ID is needed. Anyone 12 and older is welcome to get their vaccine.

Locations and times include:

  • Friday, June 11, 3:00–5:00 p.m.—Bethel AME Church, 401 E. Park St., Champaign
  • Friday, June 11 7:15–9:15 p.m.—Sholem Aquatic Center, 2205 Sangamon Dr., Champaign (will also have Johnson & Johnson)
  • Saturday, June 12, 10:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m., Mt. Olive MB Church, 808 E. Bradley Ave., Champaign
  • Wednesday, June 16, 2:00–6:00 p.m., Ivanhoe Estates, 26 Ivanhoe Dr., Urbana
  • Friday, June 18 (and every Friday!), 8:30 a.m.–4:00 p.m., CUPHD, 201 W. Kenyon Rd., Champaign
  • Sunday, June 20, 7:30–11:30 a.m., St. May Church, 612 E. Park St., Champaign

Thank you for doing your part to keep Champaign County Safe!

Need a Vaccine? Get a Free Ride.

Getting a vaccine in Champaign County has never been easier with access at area pharmacies through vaccinefinder.org, free walk-in clinics every Friday at the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District, and pop-up clinics happening all over the county.

Don’t let transportation get in your way of getting a vaccine. Uber and Lyft both announced free rides starting May 24 for those needing a ride to their vaccine appointment.

Check out the details for each platform to get your free ride, or use it for someone you know who needs a ride.

Thank you for doing your part in keeping Champaign County Safe.

Gov. Pritzker Aligns Illinois Mask Guidance with CDC for Fully Vaccinated People

Administration to Rescind Emergency Public Health Rules Following New CDC Guidance; CDC: Fully Vaccinated People No Longer Need to Wear a Mask in Most Instances or Practice Social Distancing 

SPRINGFIELD – Following guidance from the CDC that fully vaccinated people can stop wearing a mask and practicing social distancing in most indoor and outdoor settings, Governor JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Public Health have announced that Illinois will align state executive orders with the latest CDC guidance and rescind IDPH emergency rules enforcing masking and distance.

The CDC continues to require masks for everyone in healthcare settings, in congregate settings and on transit. In addition, in line with CDC guidance, the Illinois State Board of Education and Illinois Department of Public Health require masks in schools. The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services requires masks in daycare. 

“Getting vaccinated is the ultimate protection from COVID-19 and the quickest ticket back to normal life,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “With public health experts now saying fully vaccinated people can safely remove their masks in most settings, I’m pleased to follow the science and align Illinois’ policies with the CDC’s guidance. I also support the choice of individuals and businesses to continue to mask out of an abundance of caution as this pandemic isn’t over yet.” 

“While the updated guidance from the CDC is welcome news, let me remind everyone that this guidance is only for those people who are fully vaccinated,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike.  “Individuals who do not have the protection afforded by one of the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines should still wear a mask.  While more than 64% of adults in Illinois have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, we need to increase that number. To slow down disease spread and the development of even more deadly variants, we need as many people as possible to be vaccinated.”    

The Governor is issuing an updated executive order to remove the mask requirement for fully vaccinated people in most settings, and the Illinois Department of Public Health is rescinding emergency rules in the Control of Communicable Disease Code that enforce masking and distancing for vaccinated people in business settings. In line with CDC guidance, individuals who are unvaccinated should continue wearing masks in most settings and both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals should continue to wear masks on public transportation, in congregate facilities, and in healthcare settings.  

As of today, more than 4.6 million Illinoisans are fully vaccinated — 58% of residents 16+, 64% of residents 18+ and 86% of residents 65+.

LATEST CDC GUIDANCE

The CDC still recommends that unvaccinated people continue to take preventive measures, such as wearing a mask and practicing social distancing. In their latest guidance, the CDC now reports that indoor and outdoor activities pose minimal risk to fully vaccinated people and that fully vaccinated people have a reduced risk of transmitting SARS-CoV-2 to unvaccinated people. 

Fully vaccinated people can:

  • Resume activities without wearing masks or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance
  • Resume domestic travel and refrain from testing before or after travel or self-quarantine after travel
  • Refrain from testing before leaving the United States for international travel (unless required by the destination) and refrain from self-quarantine after arriving back in the United States
  • Refrain from testing following a known exposure, if asymptomatic, with some exceptions for specific settings
  • Refrain from quarantine following a known exposure if asymptomatic
  • Refrain from routine screening testing if feasible

For now, fully vaccinated people should continue to:

  • Get tested if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms
  • Follow CDC and health department travel requirements and recommendations

Mask Guidance in Champaign County

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced yesterday new guidance that will allow for vaccinated individuals to remove their masks in most indoor settings. The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has indicated that it will be revising state guidance to align with these changes. 

The most significant CDC update:

  • Fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask or physically distance in any setting, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance

In conjunction with CDC guidelines, and in anticipation of the state of Illinois adjusting its restrictions, Champaign County local units of government are adjusting their own restrictions. 

Find those here:

While this is welcome and encouraging news for many, the COVID-19 pandemic has not ended, and we all need to continue to make decisions that maximize the safety of our entire community. As we await more robust guidance from Governor Pritzker and IDPH, we continue to work closely with Champaign-Urbana Public Health District (CUPHD) and will provide important updates as they are received. We are working quickly to update our existing resources with guidance and information.

An important reminder from CUPHD regarding best practices with current mask guidance:

  • Only fully vaccinated individuals can stop wearing masks indoor and outdoors. There are certain exceptions such as healthcare, schools and congregate care facilities.
  • Anyone 12 and under should continue wearing a mask in a public setting including when they are around people outside of their immediate cohort or family. The current rate of cases are disproportionately affecting the younger population. 
  • Businesses and Organizations should establish policies to ensure unvaccinated individuals (staff and clients) are still complying with masking. 
  • This guidance further strengthens the case for vaccinations and its effectiveness in preventing serious infections, hospitalization and death. Vaccines are readily available in Champaign County and no one should delay.

People not yet vaccinated, and children under 12 must still wear a mask in indoor settings and respect the requirements issued by local businesses to protect their staff. Individuals eligible for the vaccine are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated immediately.

For more information on CDC guidance for fully-vaccinated individuals, click here.

All of Illinois is in the Bridge Phase of the Restore Illinois plan.

Thank you for your patience & doing your part to keep Champaign County Safe.

*Masks are required in healthcare settings. You will still be required to wear a mask on planes, buses, trains, and other forms of public transportation traveling into, within, or out of the United States, and in U.S. transportation hubs such as airports and stations. 

Quick Links: 

Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine is Now Available to Youths Ages 12–15

The Champaign-Urbana Public Health District (CUPHD), in partnership with Carle Health, OSF HealthCare, Christie Clinic, Promise Healthcare, and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign continue to host community-based COVID-19 vaccination clinics. 

Anyone 12 years of age or older is now able to receive the Pfizer vaccine. Moderna and Johnson & Johnson are available to individuals age 18 and older. The following clinics are currently available to those meeting age requirements based on the manufacturer’s guidance and who live or work in Champaign County. Parental consent is needed for anyone under the age of 18.

Parkland College, 2400 W. Bradley Ave., M-4 Parking Lot, Champaign

  • Pfizer vaccinations available Thursday (5/13) and Thursday (5/20) from 3:00 – 7:00 PM
  • Use the following QR code to schedule your appointment, or walk-up during event hours.

Kohl’s Plaza, 1901 N. Market Street, Champaign

  • First-dose appointments (Pfizer) at Kohl’s Plaza will be: 
    • Friday (5/14) and Saturday (5/15) from 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM
    • Sunday (5/16) from 8:00 AM – noon 
    • Monday (5/17) from 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
  • Call (217) 902-6100 to schedule or use MyCarle for the fastest service. Walk-in appointments also available.

Champaign-Urbana Public Health District, 201 W. Kenyon Road, Champaign

  • Walk-in appointments available each Friday from 8:30 AM – 3:00 PM.
  • Individuals or families with special needs or disabilities who need support with vaccine clinics, please call (217) 531-5365 and a nurse will come to your vehicle to provide the vaccination.

Promise Healthcare, 819 Bloomington Road, Champaign

To register:

  • Call the COVID Care line at: (217) 403-5402.
  • Individuals will need to register as a patient.

Pharmacies:

Additional notes:

In most cases, you will receive your second dose where you received your first. Follow instructions on scheduling your second dose from the site.

Appointments are available on a first come, first served basis. There will not be a waitlist; however, additional appointments will be available next week based on vaccine availability.

You cannot receive the COVID vaccine if you have received any other vaccinations within 14 days prior to your appointment. You may be asked to show an ID for verification of employment.

Patients will need to wear a face covering, practice social distancing, and plan to allow at least 15 minutes for observation after the vaccination. Please limit the number of individuals in your party that are not receiving the vaccine and wear clothing to allow easy access to the upper portion of the arm for the injection.

The vaccine itself is free but providers may seek appropriate reimbursement from the recipient’s plan or program (e.g., private health insurance, Medicare, Medicaid) for a vaccine administration fee. You will not be turned away if you do not have insurance or charged the balance of the bill for the vaccine. If you have questions about your specific coverage, please call the number on the back of your insurance card.

The Illinois Department of Public Health has compiled a comprehensive list of frequently asked questions about the COVID-19 vaccination. Information can be found at: http://dph.illinois.gov/covid19/vaccine-faq

Additional information on COVID-19 vaccinations can be found at: https://www.c-uphd.org/covid-vaccinations.html.

Bridge Phase Starting May 14

All of Illinois is set to move to Bridge Phase on Friday, May 14. During this phase, restrictions will ease across most industries. The State is set to move to Phase 5 on June 11 barring any significant increases in metrics. In order to move to Phase 5, we need to continue to get vaccinated, wear masks, and social distance.

Please continue to follow all mask mandates at our local businesses to continue to protect the health and safety of our community.