State’s top doctor says COVID-19 ‘not a death sentence’

Public health officials still want Illinoisans to remain cautious, but the state’s top doctor also wants people to know that COVID-19 is not a death sentence and many people are beating it.

Dr. Ngozi Ezike, the director of Illinois Department of Public Health, said a recent survey showed that after 7 days 50 percent of people with COVID-19 had made a full recovery.

“I want people to be hopeful, so we will provide these numbers daily,” Ezike said. “It is not a death sentence.”

On Thursday, health officials reported 715 new cases of COVID-19 along with 16 additional COVID-19-related deaths. Ezike said statewide a total of 7,695 cases, including 157 deaths, had been reported in 61 of the state’s 102 counties.

While the state remains under a stay-at-home order, Gov. J.B. Pritzker has launched a new initiative called “All-in Illinois” in an effort to keep people from spreading the coronavirus.

“’All in’ is our anthem and our point of pride,” the governor said. “Illinoisans staying home for the good of each other and our state.”

The launch of All in Illinois was supported by a series of public service announcements featuring famous Illinois natives, including Jane Lynch, Matt Walsh and Jackie Joyner-Kersee.

People can show solidarity by updating their Facebook profile photos with the “All-in Illinois” frame image and share messages with family and friends on social media using the #AllinIllinois hashtag.

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