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Illinois Coronavirus Updates: Lower Transmission Risk, Future of Masks, Flu and COVID – NBC Chicago

Chicago has moved down to a “lower transmission risk” for COVID-19, but what will that mean for mask mandates? The city’s top doctor weighed in.

Here’s what you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic across Illinois today:

Vaccine Events in Chicago Today

  • CDPH Uptown Immunization Clinic: 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
  • CDPH Greater Lawn Immunization Clinic: 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
  • CPS, Scammon Elementary School: 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
  • CPS, Paul Revere Elementary School: 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
  • Second Mt. Vernon MB Church: 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
  • 39th Ward Office: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
  • Atlas Senior Center: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
  • 32nd Ward Office: 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
  • Face Forward Project at Rauner Family YMCA: 5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

United Airlines Moves to Fire Employees Who Didn’t Comply With COVID Vaccine Mandate

According to a memo sent to employees Tuesday, Chicago-based United Airlines will soon begin the process of terminating nearly 600 employees who refused the company’s coronavirus vaccine requirement.

The memo, sent out by United CEO Scott Kirby and President Brett Hart, says that more than 99% of the company’s employees were either fully vaccinated or received a religious or medical accommodation.

While the deadline for requesting those extensions has been extended, the company will move to terminate a total of 593 employees, according to a spokesperson.

Read more here.

Chicago Moves to ‘Lower Transmission’ for COVID Risk. Here’s What That Means for Masks

As Chicago moves down from “high transmission” for COVID-19 risk, the city’s top doctor says health officials are in discussion with the state regarding Illinois’ mask mandate.

As of Tuesday, Chicago Department of Public Health data showed an average daily coronavirus case count of 369, which puts the city at “substantial transmission” down from “high transmission.”

CDPH Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady noted that the city’s test positivity rate, hospital capacity and ICU capacity have all dropped to “lower transmission,” as well.

What does this mean for masks?

Read more here.

Chicago Travel Advisory Remains at 48 States, 3 Territories

Chicago’s travel advisory has remained the same this week, with 48 states and three territories on the city’s warning list, the city announced Tuesday.

The advisory, which is updated weekly, did not see any states added or removed, leaving only California and Puerto Rico off the list.

“Though the national average daily COVID case rate continues a recent trend of decreasing each week, CDPH reminds unvaccinated travelers that under the advisory, they should be tested for COVID before and after travel and should quarantine upon arrival in Chicago,” the city’s health department said in a statement Tuesday.

Officials noted, however, that Connecticut could soon be removed, should its numbers remain below the threshold for another week.

Read more here.

COVID Vaccine and Kids: The Latest on Timing as Pfizer Submits Trial Data

Now that Pfizer has submitted initial trial data to the Food and Drug Administration for use of its COVID-19 vaccine in children ages 5 to 11, what will that mean for parents?

The move is a key step toward beginning vaccinations for youngsters, but authorization for COVID vaccines in kids under 12 is likely still weeks away.

Here’s the latest on timing.

COVID Booster Shots: What Illinois Residents Should Know as Extra Doses Begin

COVID vaccine booster shots are now available for millions of eligible residents, but what should Illinois residents know as they prepare for their next shot?

The CDC last week endorsed booster shots for millions of older or otherwise vulnerable Americans.

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky signed off on a series of recommendations from a panel of advisers late Thursday. However, Walensky decided to make one recommendation that the panel had rejected.

Here’s what we know so far.

Can Kids Get Flu, COVID Shots at Same Time? Pediatricians, CDC Say Yes

With flu season nearing, doctors are encouraging individuals to get the flu shot, and are informing parents that it is safe to get both the flu and COVID vaccines at the same time.

Currently, children age 12 and older are permitted to get the Pfizer COVID vaccine under terms of the FDA’s emergency use authorization for the treatment. Experts anticipate that the vaccine will soon be approved for children between the ages of 5 and 11.

Early in the pandemic, the CDC had recommended spacing out vaccinations, but has announced that further research indicates that getting both the COVID and flu shots at the same time is safe and effective in preventing both illnesses.

Read more here.

Moderna vs. Pfizer: Is One Vaccine Stronger Against Delta Variant?

With many now able to choose which COVID vaccine they receive, questions surrounding which offers better protection against the now-surging delta variant have spiked.

Several studies have been conducted to determine vaccine effectiveness, but is one vaccine actually better than the others?

According to medical experts, the three vaccines currently available in the U.S. each offer protection.

Here’s a breakdown of what we know so far about each vaccine.

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