Illinois continues vaccine expansion plan

Illinois reported 1700 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday and 55 new deaths as the push to get people vaccinated continues. 

Gov. Pritzker also announced a massive effort to expand vaccination sites throughout the state.

Thursday was the third day of mass vaccinations at the United Center as eligibility continues to change.

Officials initially said all Illinois residents could get vaccinated there, but then leaders noticed a disproportionate number of appointments given to residents outside of the city and Cook County

For now, to ensure equity in distribution, United Center appointments are only being given to Chicago residents, seniors 65 and older and/or essential workers.

Those who live in specified zip codes and are highly vulnerable to COVID-19 can sign up for an appointment as well.

"This site is being run by FEMA," Gov. Pritzker said. "If they want to make changes, we're going to follow their guidance on this."


The Cook County Health Department launched its mobile vaccine unit on Thursday as well.

At the Garden House of Maywood, 85 people received their first dose of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

The United Center continues to aim at vaccinating 6,000 people a day.