Illinois reports largest number of deaths from COVID-19 in a single day: 176

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CHICAGO -- Illinois health officials on Tuesday announced 2,122 new cases of the coronavirus, raising the state’s case total to 65,962.

There are also another 176 deaths from the disease in the last 24 hours, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health. That is a record high for deaths from the virus in a single day. The previous record was 144.

The statewide death toll is now at 2,838.

Within the past 24 hours in Illinois, laboratories have processed 13,139 virus tests. In total, the state has administered 346,286 tests statewide.

Of the 176 new deaths announced Tuesday, the youngest victim is a woman in her 30s, while the oldest is a person in their 90s, IDPH said.

The virus has been reported in 97 of the state's 102 counties. The age of cases ranges from younger than one to older than 100 years.

There had been some positive news Monday, however, regarding Illinois' coronavirus battle. Governor Pritzker said the number of COVID-19 patients needing ventilators was down, with only 22 percent of the state's ventilators in use by virus patients.

In addition, Illinois on Monday saw the lowest death toll in a single day in about two weeks, with 46 deaths.

"I'm hopeful, you know, when I saw this number today. I was hopeful that this was the beginning or, you know continuation of a trend that I've been praying for," Pritzker had said. "We're not through this yet. We're not done with this. The virus didn't go away. It's still out there."

Governor Pritzker was asked Monday if he has a target date to reopen the state and he said he wants to make sure every part of the state has enough beds and ventilators should there be another surge in COVID-19 cases.

“So what we want to make sure is that we were able to handle a spike, because that's what, you know, potentially could occur if we reopened things too fast and as to the setting a date…I will say that it really needs to be based on data and metrics,” he said.

Governor Pritzker said we will learn more about the "phases" of reopening before May 30, and it appears he is leaning towards a regional reopening in some fashion.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness and death.