COVID-19 Updates & Information

COVID-19 Boosters Important in the Fight to End the Pandemic

On Thursday, October 21, 2021 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) unanimously recommended expanded use of a booster dose of the Moderna and Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccines. According to the CDC, all three COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective in reducing the risk of severe disease, hospitalization, and death, even in the midst of the widely circulating Delta variant.

Individuals who received the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months ago and meet criteria below are eligible for a booster shot.

• 65 years and older

• Age 18+ who live in long-term care settings

• Age 18+ who have underlying medical conditions

• Age 18+ who work in high-risk settings

• Age 18+ who live in high-risk settings

Individuals who received the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine are eligible for a booster if they received the vaccine at least two months ago and are 18 years or older.

IDPH Launches Online "Vax Verity" System

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is launching a new immunization portal, Vax Verify, that will allow Illinois residents 18 years and older to check their COVID-19 vaccination record.  Vax Verify can be accessed at  https://idphportal.illinois.gov.

The verification system follows best practices to protect confidential health information.  In order to download proof of vaccination, residents will go through a brief, one-time identity verification process to gain access to their immunization history.  The State of Illinois utilizes Experian® as its identity verification service provider.  Individuals who have placed a freeze on their credit will need to unfreeze their credit with Experian® and wait 24 hours before completing the registration process.  After completing registrations, individuals can re-freeze their credit by contacting Experian®. 

After the verification process, individuals can see their own record in the Illinois Comprehensive Automated Immunization Registry Exchange (I-CARE). 

Immunization records are kept confidential and only the individual can access their vaccination history.  Parents should talk with their child’s provider to confirm their vaccination status.  Some individuals with very common names will need to take additional steps to securely prove their identities. 

Go to vaccines.gov or call 1-800-232-0233 to find COVID-19 vaccine locations near you.

Illinois Fully Aligns with New CDC Masking Recommendations

Delta variant spreading twice as easily from person to person as previous strains making vaccinations even more important

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) announced today it is fully adopting updated Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) masking recommendations to protect against COVID-19 and the Delta variant.  CDC recommends that everyone, including fully vaccinated individuals, wear a mask in public indoor setting in areas with substantial and high transmission.  CDC is also recommending universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status.  

According to CDC, the Delta variant is causing some vaccine breakthrough infections, but even so, most breakthrough infections are mild, and the vaccines are preventing severe illness, hospitalization, and death.Areas of substantial transmission are considered by CDC to be those with 50 to 99 cases per 100,000 people over a 7-day period.  Areas of high transmission are considered to be those with more than 100 cases per 100,000 people over a 7-day period.  The community level of transmission can be found here https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#county-view

IDPH will be updating school FAQs and other guidance posted online to reflect the latest CDC Interim Public Health Recommendations for Full Vaccinated People.  

CoVID-19 Funeral Assistance

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought overwhelming grief to many families. At FEMA, our mission is to help people before, during and after disasters. We are dedicated to helping ease some of the financial stress and burden caused by the virus. FEMA is providing financial assistance for COVID-19 related funeral expenses incurred after January 20, 2020. 

To be eligible for funeral assistance, you must meet these conditions:

• The death must have occurred in the United States, including the U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia.
• The death certificate must indicate the death was attributed to or caused by COVID-19.
• The applicant must be a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national or qualified alien who incurred funeral expenses after January 20, 2020.
• There is no requirement for the deceased person to have been a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national or qualified alien.

For more information on how to apply for the assistance, visit the FEMA website.

HOMEBOUND VACCINATION ASSISTANCE FOR RESIDENTS

Cook County- Homebound residents in Suburban Cook County can call the Cook County Vaccine Hotline at (833) 308-1988 to get added to a wait list for an in-home vaccine. Capacity is increasing and as soon as vaccine supply and staff capacity allows, residents will be contacted by a home health provider to make an appointment for an in-home vaccination. The vaccine hotline expanded their hours of operation from 7am to 10pm PM M-F and have added hours on Saturdays from 8 AM to 10 PM. 

Download Cook County Flyer         Download Cook County Flyer- Spanish

DuPage County- Homebound residents in DuPage County are encouraged to call the DuPage County at (630) 682--7400 and indicate they are in need of in-home vaccination. They can also register on the DuPage County COVID-19 Vaccine Registration website. 


When you've Been Fully Vaccinated: how to protect yourself and others

COVID-19 vaccines are effective at protecting you from getting sick. Based on what we know about COVID-19 vaccines, people who have been fully vaccinated can start to do some things that they had stopped doing because of the pandemic.

We’re still learning how vaccines will affect the spread of COVID-19. After you’ve been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, you should keep taking precautions in public places like wearing a mask, staying 6 feet apart from others, and avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces until we know more.

Learn WHAT'S CHANGED and WHAT HASN'T CHANGED


REVIEW THE NUMBER OF COVID-19 CASES IN THE STATE, COUNTIES AND LOCAL COMMUNITIES

Click on the following links to review the number of COVID-19 cases in the state, DuPage County, Cook County and local communities.

Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH)
IDPH COVID-19 Statistics By County & Zip Code
IDPH- Long Term Care Facility Outbreaks COVID-19
Dupage County Health Department COVID-19 Dashboard
Cook County Department of Public Health
Cook County Medical Examiner COVID-19 Related Deaths

Please see these resources when gathering for the holidays. 

Holiday Guidance Handout
Holiday Guidance Graphic Version