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Illinois files new rules for employer vaccine, testing mandate – Health News Illinois

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The Illinois Department of Labor filed new rules last week to adopt President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for employers with more than 100 workers.

The agency said the rules are effective immediately, but employers under the jurisdiction of Illinois’ Occupational Safety and Health Administration have until Jan. 24 to come into compliance with the requirements. Employers must establish and implement their policy by Feb. 24.

The filing comes as the U.S. Supreme Court took up oral arguments Friday on the federal policy, with the conservative majority raising questions over whether the federal government can enforce such a measure.

A spokeswoman for Gov. JB Pritzker said they will rescind the state rule if the high court reserves the federal policy.

Meanwhile, 7,114 Illinoisans were in the hospital with COVID-19 as of Sunday, down 56 from a pandemic-high 7,170 reported on Saturday and up 820 from the prior week.

Of the patients in the hospital, 1,139 were in intensive care units, up 27 from Saturday and up 53 from the prior week. There were 644 patients on ventilators, up nine from Saturday and down eight from the prior week.

There were 19,237 new COVID-19 cases and 34 deaths reported in Illinois on Monday.

It brings the total COVID-19 case count to 2,460,270, while the death toll is 28,568.

The seven-day average for new cases is 31,647, up 8,578 from a week ago. The seven-day average for daily deaths is 81, up 22 from the prior week.

The seven-day statewide positivity rate for cases as a percent of total tests is 13.4 percent. The seven-day statewide test positivity using the number of COVID-19 positive tests over total tests is 17.3 percent.

About 77.9 percent of eligible Illinoisans ages 5 and older have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while 68.8 percent are fully vaccinated.

Illinois vaccinators have administered 19,686,548 COVID-19 vaccines, including 3,392,790 booster doses. The seven-day average of doses administered is 54,224.

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COVID-19 Booster Shots Can Wait

Vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 are proving quite safe and highly effective in the prevention of COVID-19, especially severe and/or fatal disease.

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