Region 9, which includes Lake and McHenry counties, is on track to move to Phase 4 mitigation, allowing for bars to reopen and a loosening of other restrictions starting Wednesday, state health officials announced.
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) made the announcement Tuesday morning and said that Region 8, which includes Kane and DuPage counties, is also on track to move to Phase 4 from the current Tier 1 mitigations.
All 11 health regions in the state have been moved out of the most restrictive Tier 3 mitigation they were placed into in November by Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker as a precaution for the holidays.
Under Phase 4, indoor service at bars that don’t serve food can reopen at 25% capacity. Indoor service at both bars and restaurants can now have tables of up to 10 people.
Standing areas in restaurants and bars is limited to 25% of the standing area capacity. Certain indoor recreation facilities like bowling alleys and skating rinks can reopen.
Meetings and gatherings are limited to the lesser of 50 guests or 50% capacity indoors under Phase 4 guidelines. The move to Phase 4 also allows more sports play in schools.
Museums are limited to 25% capacity and guided tours are limited to 50 or fewer people per group. Retail and service counter along with personal care businesses are to continue operating at a limit of no more than 50% occupancy.
Currently, Region 9 has seen two consecutive days of being under the 6.5% positivity rate threshold. It is trending downward and needs to see one more day below 6.5% before the state moves it to Phase 4.
That is expected to happen on Wednesday, IDPH said.
The state is in vaccination phase, 1B, which includes residents 65 and older along with frontline essential workers. This phase has approximately 3.2 million Illinois residents.
Approximately 1.95 million vaccine doses have been delivered to Illinois by the federal government so far. Just over 1 million of the doses, including 163,000 in long-term care facilities, have been administered.
The state reported 2,304 new cases of COVID-19 in Illinois on Tuesday and 47 additional deaths. The statewide test positivity rate is at 3.9%.