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News-Gazette covers: How the crisis has played out on A-1

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Champaign County Health District: COVID-19 information

State map: COVID-19 cases by county

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The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Champaign County grew by three Sunday, to 266.

Though the number of hospitalized residents grew by one — to seven — recovered cases continued to outnumber active cases, 146-114.

None of the new cases involve residents of the village of Rantoul, which in recent days saw its number jump to 71 after an outbreak at the hog processing plant Rantoul Foods.

On-site drive-thru COVID-19 testing of 227 Rantoul Foods employees on Friday and Saturday by OSF HealthCare revealed 27 positive cases, SafeWorks Illinois announced Sunday.

Prior to Friday, about 200 employees had been tested off-site, which generated another 52 positive tests, for a total of 79 confirmed cases at Rantoul Foods, whose employees don't all live in the village of Rantoul.

As many as about 200 employees have yet to be tested “and will be encouraged to go to community testing centers," Safeworks said in a statement.

“This widespread on-site testing program was an important first step and has provided a clearer picture about the extent and impact of COVID-19 in the plant employee population and in the community,” Safeworks announced.

“All employees who have tested positive will be contacted by the C-U Public Health District to interview them and contact all of their close contacts. These employees will remain off work until they have met the Centers for Disease Control guidelines for returning to work. Employees must receive written approval to return to work from the C-U PHD.”

Said Dr. David Fletcher, who serves as the plant’s on-site medical director: “Rantoul Foods recognizes that it must remain vigilant and proactive about protecting the health of its employees. COVID-19 is an ongoing and evolving situation facing employers everywhere.”

The plant will continue to operate at partial capacity on Monday, while areas that didn’t undergo additional sanitation procedures in recent days will be sanitized.

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STATE TOTALS: 77,741 CASES, 3,406 DEATHS

The Illinois Department of Public Health announced 1,656 new cases and 57 deaths statewide on Sunday.

The state totals now stand at 77,741 cases and 3,406 deaths. Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have processed 13,653 specimens for a total of 429,984, IDPH announced.

The newly reported fatalities spanned six counties:

— Cook County: 2 males 20s, 2 males 40s, 3 females 50s, 4 males 50s, 5 females 60s, 9 males 60s, 1 unknown 60s, 5 females 70s, 7 males 70s, 4 females 80s, 4 males 80s, 4 females 90s, 1 unknown 90s, 1 male 100-plus.

— Kane County: 1 male 30s.

— Kankakee County: 1 male 60s.

— Peoria County: 1 female 80s.

— St. Clair County: 1 male 90s.

— Winnebago County: 1 female 50s.

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MORNING BRIEFING

— Four of the nine new COVID-19 cases reported Saturday in Champaign County involve residents of Rantoul, the site of a coronavirus outbreak of at a hog processing plant.

New data provided Saturday from the C-U Public Health District paints a far different picture in recovered-vs.-active cases from a day earlier.

On Friday, there were slightly more active cases than recovered, 125-123. On Saturday, there are 146 cases considered recovered to 111 active.

Six residents remain hospitalized. Six have died after testing positive for COVID-19.

Seventy-one of the 263 Champaign County residents who've tested positive for COVID-19 at any point during the pandemic live in Rantoul's 61866 ZIP code.

That's the most by far, followed by 35 in Champaign's 61821, 34 in Champaign's 61820, 31 in Champaign's 61822 and 30 in Urbana's 61802.

— A woman in her 90s from Iroquois County was among 111 coronavirus-related deaths statewide in the past 24 hours, the Illinois Department of Public Health reported this afternoon.

The death count rose to 3,349 while the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases statewide grew to 76,085, with 2,325 added today.

The state also reported that 16,617 tests were processed in the past 24 hours, for a total of 416,331.

The newly reported fatalities spanned 15 of Illinois' 102 counties.

— Saturday's commencement at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale did not take place as scheduled.

Still, "Breaking Bad" and "Better Call Saul" star Bob Odenkirk helped deliver a message to the Class of 2020.

Odenkirk, a 1984 SIU graduate, had been scheduled to receive an honorary doctor of performing arts degree during Saturday's ceremonies, canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Odenkirk recorded a message for some 2,100 graduates as part of a virtual ceremony.

“We’re grateful that Bob Odenkirk was willing to share his comedic talent and advice with graduates,” Chancellor John M. Dunn said. “Humor, thoughtfulness and compassion are all essential to maintaining a positive outlook during challenging times.”

SIU is planning to host a traditional, in-person ceremony in August or December.

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