Illinois to enter bridge phase of reopening plan on May 14
On Monday, Illinois Gove. JB Pritzker announced the entire state will move into the bridge phase of the Restore Illinois reopening plan beginning Friday, May 14. The Bridge
Phase will allow for expanded capacity limits for businesses and gatherings before the state moves to a full reopening in Phase 5. Barring any significant reversals in key COVID-19 statewide indicators, Illinois could enter Phase 5 as soon as Friday, June 11.
The governor and Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike also announced an expansion of the COVID-19 vaccine administration plan to include private doctors’ offices and small medical providers, which can now begin to order and administer COVID-19 vaccine directly to patients. Interested providers can register with the Illinois Comprehensive Automated Immunization Registry Exchange (I-CARE). Thus far, 60% of adult residents have received their first dose, including 85% of residents ages 65 and older. To further expand vaccine accessibility, state-run vaccination sites will now accept walk-ins in addition to pre-booked appointments.
“I’m pleased to announce that the concerning upward movement of cases and hospitalizations we were seeing a few weeks ago have stabilized – a testament to the lifesaving, community-protecting power of vaccinations,” said Pritzker. “As a result, on Friday, May 14th, the State of Illinois will move into the Bridge Phase of our mitigation plan – one step closer to removing nearly all of the remaining mitigations, and a very hopeful move toward fully reopening. I want to thank people across Illinois who are getting vaccinated, wearing their masks, and continuing to do their part to make your friends and family safer and your communities healthier.”
“Vaccination is how we can get back to summer camps, swimming lessons, and youth sports; but it is not something the Illinois Department of Public Health can do on its own. We need everyone’s help. If you’ve been vaccinated, talk with your friends and co-workers about getting vaccinated,” said Ezike. “Research shows that health care providers, as well as friends and family, are who most people look to when deciding to get vaccinated. Wear your mask, avoid large crowds, and get your shot.”
Over 9.7 million vaccine doses have been administered to Illinois residents in every corner of the state, with millions of those shots taking place at mass vaccination sites, pharmacies, federally qualified health centers, community outreach initiatives, and mobile clinics. Currently, 1,054 doctors’ offices across the state have already registered to administer the COVID-19 vaccine on site