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Macon County reports 174 COVID cases

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DECATUR — Macon County officials on Friday reported 174 newly-confirmed cases of COVID-19.

The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Macon County residents is 3,580.

There also have been 59 deaths, the latest being a man in his 70s.

Across the state, hospitalizations and ventilator usage for COVID-19 each pushed second-wave highs for the fifth straight day Friday. Intensive care bed usage set its second-wave high for the seventh straight day. As of Thursday night, 3,092 people in Illinois were reported hospitalized with COVID-19, including 673 in the ICU and 288 on ventilators. 

Dr. Ngozi Ezike, director of the Illinois Department of Public Health, said for Regions 1-6 – all those not including or immediately adjacent to Cook County – hospitalization metrics are already at the peaks they saw in the first wave of COVID-19 in April and May.

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“So, we are already seeing numbers that these hospitals saw at the highest point of wave one and we are not at the peak now,” Ezike said at the daily COVID-19 briefing in Chicago. “So that's just to frame it and make sure we all understand that we are getting into territory that most of these hospitals had never seen before.”

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She said Region 3, including the Springfield area and surrounding counties in west-central Illinois, and Region six, including the Champaign area and several surrounding counties in east-central Illinois, could see hospital bed shortages “in as short as two to four weeks.”

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“And so we have been on the phone, my team, with hospital leadership, with the Illinois Health and Hospitals association to discuss what the plans are to ensure that if someone is coming, whether it's for COVID, whether it's for a flu-like illness, whether it's for chest pain… or a car accident victim, that there will be beds for these individuals,” she said. “And so we are talking through those very important measures to make sure that we can deal with what we are going to see in the pending weeks and months.”

Capitol News Illinois contributed to this report. 

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