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A COVID-19 outbreak at Rantoul's Lincoln’s Challenge Academy includes 34 cases, an official told The News-Gazette's Deb Pressey Friday afternoon.

The outbreak began last weekend after a staff member tested positive, according to Lt. Co. Brad Leighton, public affairs officer for the Illinois National Guard.

Testing that followed turned up additional positives among 29 cadets and four other staff members, he said.

So far, everyone infected at the facility has been asymptomatic or has had very mild symptoms, Leighton said.

“We’ve been following all the safety protocols and we’re working very closely with Champaign-Urbana Public Health,” he said.

For instance, mask wearing has been required and cadets have been broken up into groups of 10 or fewer. Positive cases were immediately isolated from others, Leighton said.

All parents and guardians of the cadets have been notified, he said.

Lincoln's Challenge is a Rantoul-based, National Guard-operated military style school for high school dropouts.

There are currently 97 cadets in the program, Leighton said.

“They’re set to graduate in just a couple of weeks,” he said. “We’re going to have them home before Thanksgiving.”

Rantoul went into Friday with the sixth-most active cases in the county — 18. It now has 50, second only to the Champaign ZIP code (61820) that includes the UI campus.


CHAMPAIGN COUNTY: Hospitalizations (five), positivity rate (0.5%) remain unchanged

Overall in Champaign County, 8,766 new tests led to 81 new cases, a rate of 0.9 percent, CUPHD reported Friday.

The county’s seven-day positivity remained 0.5 percent for the fifth straight day.

Other Champaign County numbers of note:

— The number of county residents hospitalized with COVID-19 held at five.

— Active cases rose by 47, to 364. There are 5,113 cases classified as recovered.

— The number of close contacts currently in quarantine grew by 50, to 1,052.

Here’s an updated rundown of county ZIP codes with active cases followed by their total number of cases, according to CUPHD data:

  • 61820/Champaign: 114 active (up one from Thursday), 2,534 total (up 16)
  • 61866/Rantoul: 50 active (up 32 from Thursday), 378 total (up 33)
  • 61801/Urbana: 37 active (up three from Thursday), 516 total (up four)
  • 61821/Champaign: 36 active (up one from Thursday), 524 total (up six)
  • 61822/Champaign: 34 active (up four from Thursday), 404 total (up nine)
  • 61802/Urbana: 27 active (up three from Thursday), 383 total (up five)
  • 61853/Mahomet: 20 active (up four from Thursday), 207 total (up four)
  • 61873/St. Joseph: 9 active (unchanged from Thursday), 110 total (unchanged)
  • 61880/Tolono: 8 active (up one from Thursday), 79 total (up one)
  • 61874/Savoy: 6 active (unchanged from Thursday), 136 total (up one)
  • 61849/Homer: 4 active (unchanged from Thursday), 14 total (unchanged)
  • 61851/Ivesdale: 3 active (up one from Thursday), 5 total (up one)
  • 61877/Sidney: 3 active (up one from Thursday), 29 total (up one)
  • 61864/Philo: 2 active (unchanged from Thursday), 28 total (unchanged)
  • 61859/Ogden: 2 active (unchanged from Thursday), 17 total (unchanged)
  • 61847/Gifford: 2 active (unchanged from Thursday), 15 total (unchanged)
  • 61863/Pesotum: 2 active (unchanged from Thursday), 15 total (unchanged)
  • 61875/Seymour: 2 active (down one from Thursday), 9 total (unchanged)
  • 61878/Thomasboro: 1 active (unchanged from Thursday), 18 total (unchanged)
  • 61871/Royal: 1 active (unchanged from Thursday), 7 total (unchanged)
  • 61843/Fisher: 0 active (down two from Thursday), 41 total (unchanged)
  • 61845/Foosland: 0 active (unchanged from Thursday), 9 total (unchanged)
  • 60949/Ludlow: 0 active (unchanged from Thursday), 6 total (unchanged)
  • 61872/Sadorus: 0 active (unchanged from Thursday), 6 total (unchanged)
  • 61840/Dewey: 0 active (unchanged from Thursday), 5 total (unchanged)
  • 61816/Broadlands: 0 active (unchanged from Thursday), 3 total (unchanged)
  • 61862/Penfield: 0 active (unchanged from Thursday), 2 total (unchanged)
  • 61810/Allerton: 0 active (unchanged from Thursday), 1 total (unchanged)

The county’s pandemic totals, according to CUPHD: 660,867 tests, 5,505 confirmed cases, 28 fatalities, 8,309 close contacts quarantined and 879 close contacts that became positive.


STATE: 4,554 cases a single-day high, seven-day rate climbs to 5.1%

For the second time in as many days, the state set a pandemic single-day record for new COVID-19 cases.

Of 87,759 new tests, 4,554 came back positive statewide — a rate of 5.2 percent.

“Let me be clear, we are in a new wave here,” Gov. J.B. Pritzker said at an unrelated news conference Friday. “Anybody that hasn't noticed this, turn on the television, we're in a new wave of COVID-19, rising cases, rising positivity all across the nation, not just in the state of Illinois.”

The state’s seven-day positivity rate rose from 4.9 to 5.1 percent. It’s the 10th straight day the rate has increased.

October’s seven-day state rates:

  • Friday, Oct. 16: 5.1 percent
  • Thursday, Oct. 15: 4.9 percent
  • Wednesday, Oct. 14: 4.6 percent
  • Tuesday, Oct. 13: 4.5 percent
  • Monday, Oct. 12: 4.3 percent
  • Sunday, Oct. 11: 4.2 percent
  • Saturday, Oct. 10: 4.0 percent
  • Friday, Oct. 9: 3.8 percent
  • Thursday, Oct. 8: 3.7 percent
  • Wednesday, Oct. 7: 3.5 percent
  • Tuesday, Oct. 6: 3.4 percent
  • Monday, Oct. 5: 3.4 percent
  • Sunday, Oct. 4: 3.3 percent
  • Saturday: Oct. 3: 3.4 percent
  • Friday, Oct. 2: 3.4 percent
  • Thursday, Oct. 1: 3.5 percent

The Illinois Department of Public Health on Friday also reported 38 deaths, including two Ford County residents — a woman in her 80s and man in his 90s:

  • Christian County: 1 female 80s, 1 female 90s
  • Clay County: 1 female 50s, 1 female 80s
  • Cook County: 1 female 40s, 3 male 50s, 1 female 70s, 2 females 80s, 1 male 80s
  • DuPage County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 90s
  • Fayette County: 1 male 80s
  • Ford County: 1 female 80s, 1 male 90s
  • Jefferson County: 1 male 60s, 1 female 90s
  • JoDaviess County: 1 male 80s, 1 male 90s
  • Lake County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 90s
  • Lawrence County: 1 male 70s
  • Madison County: 1 male 60s, 1 male 70s
  • McHenry County: 1 female 60s
  • Ogle County: 1 male 70s
  • Richland County: 1 female 70s, 1 female 90s
  • Rock Island County: 1 male 60s
  • Sangamon County: 1 female 80s
  • St. Clair County: 1 male 70s, 1 male 80s
  • Wayne County: 1 male 90s
  • Will County: 1 male 80s, 1 female 90s
  • Williamson County: 1 male 70s

— Daily statewide hospitalization totals, according to IDPH: 1,848 people hospitalized (up 168 from a day earlier), 410 patients in ICU beds (up 22) and 151 patients on ventilators (up 14).

— Pandemic totals, according to IDPH: 6,618,768 tests, 336,174 cases and 9,165 deaths.


Friday Vermilion

VERMILION COUNTY: 40 new cases, 9.8 percent seven-day rate

Hours after the county was added to the state’s coronavirus warning level list for the second straight week, Vermilion officials reported 40 new cases late Friday afternoon.

That raises the county’s pandemic total to 1,251 cases, 264 of which remain active. Nine residents are hospitalized with COVID-19.

After several days of trending downward, Vermilion’s seven-day positivity rate increased on Friday — from 9.1 to 9.8 percent.

How the new cases break down by age:

  • Three in their 70s
  • Four in their 60s
  • Four in their 50s
  • Six in their 40s
  • 10 in their 30s
  • Three in their 20s
  • Eight teens
  • Two toddlers

Twelve of the new cases are family-related to others who tested positive, county health Administrator Doug Toole said.

Meanwhile, Friday marked Vermilion’s third time on the IDPH warning list, made up of counties with two or more risk indicators measuring the amount of COVID-19 increase, including cases per 100,000 residents, hospital bed usage, test positivity rate and number of deaths among others.

Common causes for an increase in cases in those counties are college parties, weddings, large gatherings, bars and clubs, long-term care facilities and other congregate settings, travel to neighboring states, and spread among members of the same household who are not isolating at home, according to IDPH.

The 33 other counties at a warning level, according to IDPH:

  • Adams
  • Alexander
  • Boone
  • Cass
  • Christian
  • Clay
  • Clinton
  • Crawford
  • DeKalb
  • DeWitt
  • Jasper
  • Jefferson
  • Jo Daviess
  • Johnson
  • Kane
  • Lee
  • Macon
  • McDonough
  • McHenry
  • Mercer
  • Monroe
  • Pike
  • Pulaski
  • Randolph
  • Saline
  • Stephenson
  • Union
  • Warren
  • Washington
  • Wayne
  • Whiteside
  • Will
  • Winnebago

Jerry Nowicki of our Springfield-based partner, Capitol News Illinois, reports:

In Region 1 of the state’s COVID-19 mitigation plan, which includes the northwest part of the state, the positivity rate increased to 10.6 percent. Mitigations including the closure of bars and restaurants to indoor service cannot be lifted until the region is below 6.5 percent for three consecutive days.

Region 5, which includes southern Illinois and had a decreasing rate for two days, saw its rolling positivity rate increase to 7.8 percent. If it surpasses 8 percent for three straight days, it would be subject to greater state mitigations similar to those in Region 1. Those also include maximum capacity allotments of 25 people, down from 50 allowed elsewhere.

Excluding University of Illinois saliva tests, Region 6, which includes East Central Illinois, saw its positivity rate increase to 7.4 percent.

Other regions ranged from 6 percent to 7.4 percent.


Friday UI positivity

UI: Seven-day positivity rate remains 0.2 percent for eighth straight day

Nine new cases emerged from 7,777 new tests on the UI campus Thursday, a rate of 0.1 percent, according to data updated Friday.

For the eighth straight day, the UI's seven-day positivity rate remained 0.2 percent, the lowest point since Aug. 18, two days after students started moving in for the semester.

Since Aug. 24, when classes began, there have been 2,391 unique cases of COVID-19 on campus.

Since Aug. 16, when move-in week kicked off, there have been 2,673 cases.

Friday UI cases

Here’s a daily breakdown of tests and unique cases since students began reporting to campus in mid-August, according to the UI’s COVID-19 dashboard:

  • Thursday, Oct. 15: 7,777 new tests, 9 new cases
  • Wednesday, Oct. 14: 9,322 new tests, 11 new cases
  • Tuesday, Oct. 13: 10,057 new tests, 14 new cases
  • Monday, Oct. 12: 9,573 new tests, 23 new cases
  • Sunday, Oct. 11: 4,358 new tests, 8 new cases
  • Saturday, Oct. 10: 3,574 new tests, 11 new cases
  • Friday, Oct. 9: 9,867 new tests, 10 new cases
  • Thursday, Oct. 8: 7,953 new tests, 14 new cases
  • Wednesday, Oct. 7: 9,780 new tests, 21 new cases
  • Tuesday, Oct. 6: 10,369 new tests, 25 new cases
  • Monday, Oct. 5: 11,142 new tests, 48 new cases
  • Sunday, Oct. 4: 4,374 new tests, 7 new cases
  • Saturday, Oct. 3: 3,851 new tests, 9 new cases
  • Friday, Oct. 2: 10,765 new tests, 18 new cases
  • Thursday, Oct. 1: 7,577 new tests, 27 new cases
  • Wednesday, Sept. 30: 10,354 new tests, 32 new cases
  • Tuesday, Sept. 29: 10,637 new tests, 36 new cases
  • Monday, Sept. 28: 10,736 new tests, 36 new cases
  • Sunday, Sept. 27: 4,408 new tests, 28 new cases
  • Saturday, Sept. 26: 3,892 new tests, 17 new cases
  • Friday, Sept. 25: 11,090 new tests, 41 new cases
  • Thursday, Sept. 24: 9,086 new tests, 27 new cases
  • Wednesday, Sept. 23: 9,671 new tests, 28 new cases
  • Tuesday. Sept. 22: 11,030 new tests, 62 new cases
  • Monday, Sept. 21: 10,474 new tests, 42 new cases
  • Sunday, Sept. 20: 4,383 new tests, 11 new cases
  • Saturday, Sept. 19: 4,133 new tests, 13 new cases
  • Friday, Sept. 18: 10,564 new tests, 27 new cases
  • Thursday, Sept. 17: 7,802 new tests, 18 new cases
  • Wednesday, Sept. 16: 9,965 new tests, 24 new cases
  • Tuesday, Sept. 15: 11,232 new tests, 45 new cases
  • Monday, Sept. 14: 10,214 new tests, 40 new cases
  • Sunday, Sept. 13: 4,568 new tests, 17 new cases
  • Saturday, Sept. 12: 4,009 new tests, 10 new cases
  • Friday, Sept. 11: 11,253 new tests. 35 news cases
  • Thursday, Sept. 10: 6,626 new tests, 34 new cases
  • Wednesday, Sept. 9: 11,993 new tests, 47 new cases
  • Tuesday, Sept. 8: 11,621 new tests, 81 new cases
  • Monday, Sept. 7: 6,299 new tests, 69 new cases
  • Sunday, Sept. 6: 2,987 new tests, 37 new cases
  • Saturday, Sept. 5: 2,609 new tests, 37 new cases
  • Friday, Sept. 4: 14,204 new tests, 104 new cases
  • Thursday, Sept. 3: 14,841 new tests, 88 new cases
  • Wednesday, Sept. 2: 7,089 new tests, 120 new cases
  • Tuesday, Sept. 1: 14,367 new tests, 199 new cases
  • Monday, Aug. 31: 17,227 new tests, 230 new cases
  • Sunday, Aug. 30: 3,640 new tests, 104 new cases
  • Saturday, Aug. 29: 2,895 new tests, 50 new cases
  • Friday, Aug. 28: 15,030 new tests, 65 new cases
  • Thursday, Aug. 27: 15,123 new tests, 60 new cases
  • Wednesday, Aug. 26: 6,812 new tests, 54 new cases
  • Tuesday, Aug. 25: 15,850 new tests, 89 new cases
  • Monday, Aug. 24: 17,656 new tests, 79 new cases
  • Sunday, Aug. 23: 4,474 new tests, 53 new cases
  • Saturday, Aug. 22: 3,326 new tests, 43 new cases
  • Friday, Aug. 21: 10,877 new tests, 54 new cases
  • Thursday, Aug. 20: 10,742 new tests, 52 new cases
  • Wednesday, Aug. 19: 6,300 new tests, 29 new cases
  • Tuesday, Aug. 18: 6,162 new tests, 20 new cases
  • Monday, Aug. 17: 9,064 new tests, 24 new cases
  • Sunday, Aug. 16: 2,453 new tests, 7 new cases