When Is Illinois Expected to Reopen?
Coronavirus cases in Illinois have reached over 50,000, and experts believe the state might be reaching its peak of cases. However, predictions on the peak and when the state might be able to fully reopen are changing constantly.
Case-tracking data provided by the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), shows that it could be safe to lift social distancing restriction across Illinois in late May, however this prediction has changed multiple times.
IHME’s forecast is based on projections of deaths per day, the percentage of use of hospital resources, and an assumption that the state begins or continues containment strategies, such as isolation, limiting gathering size, testing, and contact tracing.
When Will the Quarantine Be Lifted in Illinois?
Currently, the entire state of Illinois is on a modified stay-at-home order through at least May 30. Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker is expected to announce quarantine changes region-by-region, based on data showing that the virus is impacting some areas more heavily than others. Under Gov. Pritzker’s latest order, many businesses were allowed to reopen on May 1, as long as they adhere to strict social distancing guidelines that limit risky activities like congregating and touching.
For example, golf courses may open, but they can only book tee times over the phone, golfers can only play by themselves or in twosomes, and players cannot rent a cart or remove flags. State parks can also reopen under modified guidelines, such as limits on the number of people in a boat. Additionally, non-essential retail stores may reopen, but customers have to order online or over the phone and must use curbside pickup.
Other businesses that were allowed to reopen on May 1 under modified operating procedures include pet groomers, flower shops, and gardening stores. Hospitals were also allowed to start offering some “medically necessary, time-sensitive” surgeries again, such as hernia repairs and joint replacements.
Nonetheless, anyone over 2-years-old is still required to wear a mask in most public settings in Illinois, and Gov. Pritzker has continued to urge people to stay home if they can in order to reduce the risk that the state will face a second outbreak.
Tips for Staying Safe in the ‘New Normal’
There are a few steps you can take to protect yourself in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the Red Cross.
- Avoid going out in public as much as possible, except for essential errands.
- Wear a mask whenever you’re in public, especially if you are sick and especially in any place where you can’t keep at least six feet away from other people.
- Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water after you’ve been in a public place, visited the bathroom, or coughed, sneezed, or blown your nose.
- Stay home if you aren’t feeling well, except to get medical care. If possible, call the doctor before showing up unannounced, as they might be able to give you medical guidance over the phone or via video conference.
- Regularly clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces like light switches, doorknobs, handles, and phones.
- Whenever you sneeze or cough, use a tissue or use the inside of your elbow to cover your face.
It’s important to take measures to keep yourself safe and healthy during this unprecedented pandemic. At Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard, P.C., we are dedicated to sharing information related to the safety and well-being of our community.