WIUM Tristates Public Radio

More COVID-19 Deaths and Outbreaks in the Region

Oct 23, 2020

16 deaths in the region are blamed on the coronavirus in the past week, new outbreaks of the virus are reported in McDonough and Schuyler counties, and people were exposed to the virus at a dental center in Hancock County.


The number of coronavirus deaths in Knox County doubled in the past week from 8 to 16. McDonough and Adams counties each reported 2 deaths; and Hancock, Fulton, Lee, and Warren counties each reported 1 death. It was the first COVID-19 death reported in Fulton County since the pandemic began early this year.

The data comes from the coronavirus websites operated by the state of Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri, which report the following as of Thursday, October 22, 2020:

  • Adams County – 1,730 cases/15 deaths
  • Brown County – 103 cases/0 deaths
  • Cass County – 455 cases/11 deaths
  • Clark County – 104 cases/0 deaths
  • Des Moines County – 1,291 cases/9 deaths
  • Fulton County – 460 cases/1 death
  • Hancock County – 292 cases/4 deaths
  • Henderson County – 121 cases/0 deaths
  • Knox County – 1,190 cases/16 deaths
  • Lee County – 905 cases/10 deaths
  • Lewis County – 179 cases/2 deaths
  • McDonough County – 708 cases/17 deaths
  • Schuyler County – 84 cases/1 death
  • Scotland County – 68 cases/1 death
  • Van Buren County – 165 cases/2 deaths
  • Warren County – 474 cases/7 deaths

It should be noted the McDonough County Health Department reports 18 coronavirus-related deaths in the county while the state reports 17.

Last week’s figures can be found here.  

COVID-19 Outbreaks & Exposure

The McDonough County Health Department is reporting new COVID-19 outbreaks at two long-term care facilities in Macomb.

The department said The Elms has three confirmed cases and three probable cases, while Wesley Village Retirement Center has two confirmed cases.

The department said the Illinois Department of Public Health defines an outbreak at a long-term care facility as one or more positive cases along with cases of others who are ill with symptoms.

The Schuyler County Health Department reported an outbreak at Webster Elementary School in Rushville with two confirmed cases of the virus.

The department said it is working to identify and monitor people who were in contact with those who contracted the virus. 

The Hancock County Dental Center is reporting a COVID-19 exposure on October 13 and 14. The county health department said it is doing contact tracing to identify those who came in close contact with the infected person.

On Friday, October 23, 2020, the state of Illinois announced 51 counties are at a warning level COVID 19. They include Adams, Cass, Henderson, Knox, McDonough, Pike, and Warren counties.

A state news release said a county enters a warning level when an increase in two or more COVID-19 risk indicators that measure the amount of COVID-19.  Those indicators include:

  • New cases per 100,000 people.  If there are more than 50 new cases per 100,000 people in the county, this triggers a warning.
  • Number of deaths.  This metric indicates a warning when the weekly number of deaths increases more than 20% for two consecutive weeks.
  • Weekly test positivity.  This metric indicates a warning when the 7-day test positivity rate rises above 8%.
  • ICU availability.  If there are fewer than 20% of intensive care units available in the region, this triggers a warning.
  • Weekly emergency department visits.   This metric indicates a warning when the weekly percent of COVID-19-like-illness emergency department visits increase by more than 20% for two consecutive weeks.
  • Weekly hospital admissions.  A warning is triggered when the weekly number of hospital admissions for COVID-19-like-illness increases by more than 20% for two consecutive weeks.
  • Tests performed.  This metric is used to provide context and indicate if more testing is needed in the county.
  • Clusters. This metric looks at the percent of COVID-19 cases associated with clusters or outbreaks and is used to understand large increase in cases.

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