Chicago COVID: Restrictions May Return In Cook County Suburbs If Coronavirus Cases Continue To Rise, Health Officials Say

CHICAGO (WLS) – Suburban Cook County may be on the verge of imposing new restrictions after health officials reported a sharp increase in the number of COVID-19 cases.

“We have seen more than 600 new cases in suburban Cook, in our jurisdiction alone,” said Dr. Rachel Rubin. “And that means we are at the beginning of another wave.”

Now, county health officials said the spike in cases could translate into further restrictions imposed if those numbers don’t decline.

According to recent data, the most significant increase in cases is in the 20-30 year age group, and the positivity rate almost doubled compared to recent weeks.

“Our overall positivity rate, I think, is now maybe five, we went down to three and this is a big problem,” Dr. Rubin said.

Despite the expansion of ongoing vaccination efforts, the growing number of cases has county officials contemplating what needs to be done.

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“We may very well have to take drastic action in a matter of days. I don’t promise that one way or another,” Dr. Rubin said. “We need to assess exactly what kinds of activities and movements are really driving this increase.”

That could mean bringing back restrictions on companies.

“We need to continue to be safe and those are really the messages and if we have to take more drastic measures [mitigation]You know, go back a bit on the types of indoor activities, restaurants and gyms and things like that; we hope we don’t get to that point where we have to do that, “added Dr. Rubin.

Evanston resident Archie Ong has seen his city go through so much change over the past year

“It’s going to be a big setback, obviously a lot of the restaurants here are struggling,” Ong said. “There have been several restaurants that have closed, so I hope, I hope it doesn’t happen.”

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He and his family still stay home for the most part and hope that others who may think the worst is over will do the same.

“People are getting vaccinated and they think it’s safe. I guess maybe it’s safe, but at the same time I think we shouldn’t relax so much,” added Ong.

For now, health officials recommend keeping things outdoors while continuing to cover and maintain distance.

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