(The Center Square) – State health officials reported on Friday that 24 counties in Illinois were at a warning level for the spread of COVID-19.
The Illinois Department of Public Health said that Bond, Bureau, Cass, Clinton, Coles, Crawford, Cumberland, DeWitt, Edwards, Effingham, Greene, Jasper, Jo Daviess, Lawrence, Madison, Marion, Rock Island, St. Clair, Shelby, Washington, Wayne, Williamson, Wabash, and Union counties were at the warning level.
A county reaches the warning level when two or more COVID-19 risk indicators increase.
While the reasons for the increases vary, health officials said an increase in cases and outbreaks were associated with university and college parties, college sports teams, large gatherings and events, bars and clubs, weddings and funerals, long-term care facilities, correctional centers, manufacturing plants and schools. The department also said general community transmission of COVID-29 was increasing.
The department said public health officials had reported people not social distancing, gathering in large groups, and failing to wear masks. It also said some communities lack access to convenient testing and pointed at local police and prosecutors that are not enforcing measures designed to reduce the spread of COVID-19. State officials also pointed to people refusing to participate in contact tracing, not providing information on contacts and not answering the phone when contact tracers call.