A second case of COVID-19 coronavirus was announced in Montgomery County on Monday, Governor JB Pritzker extended the stay at home order and suspended on-site learning in K-12 schools through the month of April on Tuesday, and Christian County Coroner Amy Winans announced the first two deaths from the disease in her county on Wednesday, April 1.
During a press conference at noon on Wednesday, Winans said the two Christian County COVID-19 deaths were an unrelated male and female, both in their 80s, and both previous known cases.
“The names are being withheld pending the notification of all family members,” Winans said. “All follow-up investigations are being performed following IDPH protocol through our local health department.”
The second confirmed Montgomery County case has been quarantined at home since experiencing symptoms and is doing well, according to Christian-Montgomery County EMA Director Greg Nimmo.
As of Wednesday Montgomery County had two confirmed cases, 39 negative tests, and 25 tests remain pending. The state reported 6,980 confirmed cases on Wednesday resulting in 141 deaths. Just two weeks prior, on March 18, those numbers were 288 confirmed cases and one death.
“I have let the science guide our decisions and I’ve relied upon the top medical experts, scientists, public health researchers, epidemiologists, mathematicians and modelers, from the greatest institutions in the world whose guidance on infection rates and potential mortalities and protective measures is second to none,” the governor said in extending the stay at home order. “Illinois has one of the strongest public health systems in the nation–but even so, we aren’t immune to this virus’ ability to push our existing capacity beyond its limit. We need to maintain our course and keep working to flatten the curve.”
In Taylorville, one of the 12 cases at Rolling Meadows senior living apartments remains in critical condition as of Wednesday in the intensive care unit in a Springfield hospital.
“There has been some concern raised locally about becoming exposed to COVID-19 through the mail,” Nimmo said. “According to the United States Postal Service, there is currently no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread through the mail. They cite the CDC and World Health Organization as its source of information. It can be a good practice to wipe envelopes and packages down with disinfecting wipes and utilize hand washing and hand sanitizer after handling mail.”
The CDC has not received any reports of pets or other animals becoming sick with COVID-19, Nimmo said, “but should you or a household member become sick with COVID-19 (either suspected or confirmed), you should restrict contact with pets and other animals, just like you would around other people. This can help ensure both you and your animals stay healthy. When possible, have another member of your household care for your animals while you are sick.”