“We are on target to move to Phase 3 on May 29,” Christian-Montgomery EMA Director Greg Nimmo said of Gov. JB Pritzker’s regional five-phase plan to ease restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19 coronavirus.
“As of May 14, the Central Region of the Governor’s five-phase plan–which includes Christian and Montgomery County–is in Phase 2. We are on target to move to Phase 3 on May 29, and Phase 4 would be allowed on June 26 if we can stay the course.”
The determination of moving from one phase to another will be driven by the COVID-19 positivity rate in each region, as well as measures of maintaining regional hospital surge capacity, Nimmo said.
The Montgomery County Health Department reported four new positive coronavirus cases over the weekend, bringing the county total up to 39 as of Sunday, May 17. Eleven tests remain pending.
Statewide, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) reported 130 more COVID-19 deaths on Thursday, 138 on Friday, 74 on Saturday, and 51 on Sunday bringing the state total up to 4,177.
Nimmo urged continuation of social distancing and wearing masks while in the public around others.
“The wearing of masks shows your concern for others above yourself in case you are a potential asymptomatic carrier of COVID-19,” Nimmo said.
If the region containing Montgomery County remains on course for moving to Phase 3 on May 29, all gatherings of 10 people or fewer will be allowed–subject to change based on data. All health care providers may open with IDPH approved safety guidance. Limited child care and summer programs open with IDPH approved safety guidance, and state parks will open.
Non-essential manufacturing that can safely operate with social distancing can reopen with IDPH approved safety guidance, and employees of “non-essential” businesses will be allowed to return to work with IDPH approved safety guidance –depending upon risk level. Employers are encouraged to provide accommodations for COVID-19-vulnerable employees.
Bars and restaurants may remain open for delivery, pickup, and drive through only, barbershops and salons may open with IDPH approved safety guidance, and health and fitness clubs may provide outdoor classes and one-on-one personal training with IDPH approved safety guidance
Retail stores may open with capacity limits and IDPH approved safety guidance, including face coverings.