CHICAGO - Despite all of the good news about vaccines and reopenings, health officials are still concerned we could be letting our guard down prematurely.
The warning comes as many states, including in Illinois and the Chicagoland area, are seeing upticks in daily case counts and that's likely due to fast-spreading variants, making it all the more urgent for Americans to get vaccinated.
But on Monday, a promise was announced that getting vaccinated will become easier.
"Our numbers are increasing a little bit, although they’re not as high as we would like to see," said Gary Mayor Jerome Prince.
Prince showed FOX 32 where the federal mass vaccination site would open next week, in the parking lot of the former Roosevelt High School.
The goal is to vaccinate more than 100,000 northwest Indiana residents before the end of May.
"This site will service 2,000 persons per day for eight weeks. But in addition to that there will be an additional 1000 vaccinations offered through mobile units," Mayor Prince said.
In Chicago, the Federation of Labor showed off its new mass vaccination site, which will provide shots for nearly 1000 union members a day when it’s up and running.
"This vaccination site is the first in the country that is run by the labor movement specifically for union members," said Bob Reiter, president of the Chicago Federation of Labor.
In addition, Chicago on Monday officially moved into Phase 1C of its vaccination program, expanding eligibility to all essential workers and Chicago residents 16 and over with underlying medical conditions.
"What this means is about 84% of adults in Chicago are now eligible to receive this life-saving vaccine," Mayor Lori Lightfoot said.
But city health officials are also worried after the COVID positivity rate and number of cases doubled in the past three weeks.
"COVID-19 case numbers have been on the rise again, with increases in particular among young adults," said Dr. Jennifer Seo of the Chicago Department of Public Health.
And in Washington, a new vaccination promise from President Joe Biden was announced.
"Due to the steps we're taking today, 90 percent of Americans will be within five miles of the location where they can get a shot as of April the 19th," Biden said.