Chicagoans visiting parts of the United States classified as medium or high COVID-19 community levels by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should take precautions to prevent the spread of COVID, according to the updated travel advisory. from the city.
The Chicago Department of Public Health said Friday that 7.4% of U.S. counties were listed at medium or high community level, citing the CDC’s latest classifications.
Community-level metrics are determined by new COVID-19 admissions per 100,000 population over the past seven days, the percentage of inpatient beds occupied by COVID-19 patients, and the total number of new COVID-19 cases. 19 per 100,000 population in the past seven days, according to the CDC.
Nineteen Illinois counties are at a community high level, up from 15 last week, updated data showed.
Nationally, the number of counties at a high level decreased slightly from last week, from 250 to 241. More than 30% of the country would be at a medium or high community level, marking an increase from from 28% last week.
Will, Cook, Lake, DuPage, and McHenry counties in the Chicago area all remain in the high category, along with several others across the state, as new subvariant counties to be expanded nationwide.
Here’s what to do if you’re visiting an area that’s considered medium or high community:
At high community levels, people are encouraged to wear masks in indoor public spaces regardless of their vaccination status and to maintain improved ventilation in indoor spaces when possible.
Those 5 or older who are not up to date with COVID vaccinations should avoid traveling to areas listed as high community levels, according to the recommendations. Unvaccinated people who decide to travel should follow CDC guidelines upon returning to Chicago, which include quarantining for 5 days after travel and testing for COVID 3-5 days after returning.
At mid-level community levels, people should “consider wearing a mask in indoor public spaces,” health officials said. In these areas, people who are immunocompromised or at high risk of serious illness should ask their healthcare provider if they should wear a mask and take other precautions.