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Region 1 now another step closer to returning to Phase 4, but what does that look like? We break down the changes

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WREX) — Region 1 has taken another step in returning to Phase 4 of the state's "Restore Illinois" plan.

On Thursday, the Illinois Department of Public Health reported the region's seven-day rolling positivity rate for COVID-19 is now at 6.3%.

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This is the second consecutive day the region has been below 6.5%, which is the state's threshold to move back to Phase 4.

In order to move to Phase 4, a region must meet the following metrics:

1) A test positivity rate less =6.5% for three consecutive days, as measured by the 7-day rolling average; AND
2) =20% available staffed ICU hospital beds for three consecutive days, on a 7-day rolling average; AND
3) No sustained increase in the number of people in the hospital with COVID-19 for seven out of 10 days, on a 7-day average.

The region continues to meet the ICU bed availability (27%) and decrease of COVID-19 hospitalizations (8 out of 10 days).

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If the region is under 6.5% for its positivity rate on Friday, the region would meet the state's requirements to move back into Phase 4. However, the region would still need clearance from the state to move back to Phase 4.

So whenever the region does move back to Phase 4, what does that look like?

Phase 4 includes several changes, including health and fitness centers, theaters, museums, zoos and indoor dining are among the key businesses to reopening.

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Groups up to 50 people can gather which increased from gatherings of 10 or less under Phase 3.

Here's a full look at what Phase 4 entails:

  • Meetings and events: Venues and meeting spaces can resume. Multiple groups are permitted given facilities have space to appropriately social distance and can limit interaction between groups. This includes activities such as conferences and weddings.
  • Indoor and Outdoor recreation: Revised guidelines to allow select indoor recreation facilities (e.g., bowling alleys, skating rinks), as well as clubhouses to reopen. Concessions permitted with restrictions.
  • Indoor Dining: Indoor dining can reopen with groups of 10 or less, with tables spaced 6-feet apart in seated areas and with standing areas at no more than 25% of capacity.
  • Museums: Can reopen with no more than 25% occupancy, and with interactive exhibits and rides closed; guided tours should be limited to 50 people or fewer per group; museums should have a plan to limit congregation via advance ticket sales and timed ticketing; concessions permitted with restrictions.
  • Zoos: Can reopen with no more than 25% occupancy, and with interactive exhibits, indoor exhibits, and rides closed; guided tours should be limited to 50 people or fewer per group; zoos should have a plan to limit congregation via advance ticket sales and timed ticketing; concessions permitted with restrictions.
  • Cinema and Theatre: Indoor seated theaters, cinemas, and performing arts centers to allow admission of the lesser of up to 50 guests OR 50% of overall theater or performance space capacity (applies to each screening room); outdoor capacity limited to 20% of overall theater or performance space capacity; concessions permitted with restrictions.
  • Outdoor seated spectator events: Outdoor spectator sports can resume with no more than 20% of seating capacity; concessions permitted with restrictions.
  • Film production: Allow no more than 50% of sound stage or filming location capacity; crowd scenes should be limited to 50 people or fewer.
  • Youth and Recreational Sports: Revised guidelines allow competitive gameplay and tournaments; youth and recreational sports venues can operate at 50% of facility capacity, 20% seating capacity for spectators, and group sizes up to 50 with multiple groups permitted during practice and competitive games given venues have space to appropriately social distance and can limit interaction between groups; concessions permitted with restrictions.
  • Health and fitness centers: Revised guidelines allow gyms to open at 50% capacity and allow group fitness classes of up to 50 people with new safety guidelines for indoors, with multiple groups permitted given facilities have space to appropriately social distance and can limit interaction between groups.
  • Day camps: Water-based activities permitted in accordance with IDPH guidelines; no more than 50% of facility capacity with group size of no more than 15 participants in a group, unless participants changing weekly.

On Thursday, Illinois health officials reported reported 4,979 new confirmed and probable cases of the virus, including 123 additional deaths.

Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 1,086,333 cases, including 18,520 deaths.

Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have reported 99,036 specimens for a total 15,083,685. As of last night, 3,281 in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 662 patients were in the ICU and 358 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

The preliminary seven-day statewide test positivity from January 14–20, 2021 is 6.5%.

As of last night, 901,025 doses of vaccine have been delivered to providers in Illinois, including Chicago. In addition, approximately 524,050 doses have been allocated to the federal government’s Pharmacy Partnership Program for long-term care facilities.

RELATED: Illinois to move to Phase 1B of COVID-19 vaccinations on Jan. 25

This brings the total Illinois doses to 1,425,075. IDPH is currently reporting a total of 572,389 vaccines administered, including 90,752 for long-term care facilities. Yesterday, a total of 34,649 doses were administered. The 7-day rolling average of vaccines administered daily is 22,585 doses.

Coronavirus Resources

  • Click here for the latest CDC novel coronavirus resources and links.
  • Track the COVID-19 globally using this map tracker here.
  • Click here for the latest information from the Illinois Department of Public Health.
  • Need to get tested? Here's a list of mobile testing sites provided by the state.
  • Looking for more information on the COVID-19 vaccine? Click here.
  • You can get the latest coverage from 13 WREX here.
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Andrew Carrigan

Andy Carrigan is the Social Media & Digital Content Manager at WREX. He joined the 13 WREX team as a photographer in 2016 after graduating from Northern Illinois University.

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