Illinois reaches milestone with 50% of residents now fully vaccinated

Illinois reached another COVID-19 vaccination milestone this week. 

More than 50 percent of the state's population now fully vaccinated, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Over 70 percent of Illinois residents have received at least one dose. 

However, state health officials reported 745 new cases on Monday.

The delta variant is being blamed for the increases in cases across the state. CDC officials said Monday the delta variant of the coronavirus now accounts for an estimated 83% of COVID-19 cases in the United States.

With the coronavirus resurging in nearby states, Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker says he reserves the right to order a new round of shutdowns. 

Even so, the governor insists Illinois, especially the Chicago area, is still a long way from a new round of shutdowns.

Pritzker says if it happens, it would look different than what he ordered last year.


The governor also said he is currently most concerned about rising rates of COVID-19 infection and hospitalization in Illinois counties next to Missouri.

Chicago residents are getting 22.6% of the vaccine doses, while downstate residents are getting 32.7% of the shots. More than half the doses being administered in Illinois were going into the arms of suburban residents for much of June, all of May and the last half of April, according to IDPH figures.

The governor's ready for a bruising battle over these pandemic-related issues, which is one of the main reasons he launched his re-election campaign on Monday, 16 months before the votes will be counted in the November 2022 general election for governor.