La Salle County COVID-19 cases surpass 2020 totals for September

3 county residents die from complications related to the virus

The number of COVID-19 cases and COVID-related deaths in La Salle County this month surpassed those in September 2020.

A La Salle County woman in her 40s, a man in his 60s and a woman in her 70s died from complications related to COVID-19. Their deaths were the 10th, 11th and 12th COVID-related deaths this month. There have been 340 COVID-related deaths countywide since the beginning of the pandemic.

Additionally, there were 197 new COVID-19 cases in the county, increasing this month’s total to 816, which is 312 more cases than September 2020 and 78 more cases than last month. The number of cases was down from 216 the previous week.

Making up the new cases are 17 boys younger than 13, 19 girls younger than 13, 10 teenage boys, seven teenage girls, 11 men in their 20s, 14 women in their 20s, 20 men in their 30s, 11 women in their 30s, 10 men in their 40s, 17 women in their 40s, 13 men in their 50s, nine women in their 50s, six men in their 60s, 15 women in their 60s, two men in their 70s, three women in their 70s, five men in their 80s, five women in their 80s, a man in his 90s and two women in their 90s.

By ZIP code, there were 38 new cases reported in Streator, 32 in Ottawa, 19 in La Salle, 15 in Mendota, 15 in Sandwich, 14 in Peru, 10 in Marseilles, eight in Oglesby, seven in Seneca, five in Leland, five in Somonauk, four in Millington, four in Wenona, three in Sheridan, three in Earlville, three in Tonica, three in Utica, three in Ransom, three in Grand Ridge and two in Cedar Point.

There were 194 individuals in La Salle County removed from isolation after testing positive from COVID-19.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data tracker (https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#county-view), La Salle County is experiencing high community transmission based on the seven-day moving average of new cases per 100,000 (238 per 100,000) of COVID-19, as of Thursday.

In addition, within the county’s health region, which includes several other counties, there are 16.4% of ICU beds available, which is below the 20% target.

Until La Salle County can get a handle on the number of new cases being identified each week and slow the spread occurring, La Salle County will continue to be at risk for remaining at the state’s warning level. This status, also known as “orange,” indicates there are warning signs of increased COVID-19 risk in the county. A warning level means a county saw increases in two or more COVID-19 risk indicators.

All Illinois residents are required to wear masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Masks continue to be a way everyone can reduce transmission and keep themselves and those around them safe and healthy, the health department said.

There are 53,820 county residents fully vaccinated, which is 49.18% of the county’s population. That is an increase of 630 individuals in the past week.

“Vaccination is one of the most important tools we have available to us,” the health department said. “It has never been easier to get vaccinated for COVID-19. There are many options available in our community.”

Go to https://www.vaccines.gov/ to search for information on how to get a vaccine. The La Salle County Health Department has COVID -19 vaccine available at the health department on Etna Road in Ottawa by appointment only, Monday through Friday. The health department has Johnson and Johnson, Moderna and Pfizer available. Residents who still need to be vaccinated should call the health department at 815-433-3366 to make an appointment.

OSF reports most of its COVID-19 patients are unvaccinated

OSF HealthCare, which has hospitals in Ottawa, Mendota, Pontiac and Princeton, reported Wednesday it has 131 patients hospitalized from COVID-19 and 107 of them are not vaccinated from the virus.

Of those patients, 24 are in ICU — four of them vaccinated, 20 of them not. Nine patients are on ventilators and each of them were not vaccinated.

At Morris Hospital, there are six patients hospitalized with COVID-19 — one of them in ICU. Each of them are unvaccinated.

Derek Barichello

Derek Barichello

Derek is a Streator High and University of Illinois graduate. He worked at the Albany-Herald in Albany, Ga., and for Sauk Valley Media in Sterling, before returning to his hometown paper. He's now news editor for both the NewsTribune and The Times.