Recent Trends

New Cases: The top chart shows that the weekly number of new cases per 100,000 people in Illinois is 50 for the week ending July 22, a 42% increase from the week ending July 15 and a 138% increase from the week ending July 8. The number of new cases per week in the State are now 117% higher than they were on June 10, the day before the State moved to Phase 5. The trend is up.

In the last two weeks, the trends of new cases per week are also up in Evanston, suburban Cook County and Chicago.

Test Positivity Rates: The lower chart shows that the test-positivity rates in each region are at or below 3.3%.  The relatively low rates suggest that the amount of testing in each region is adequate. But the test positivity rates are trending up in each region.  For example, the State’s rate has moved up from 1.6% on July 8 to 3.3% today. See Footnotes 1 and 2.

Vaccinations: The number of people in the State who are vaccinated continues to grow, but at a very slow pace. As of July 22, 71.3% of Illinois residents 12 and older had at least one dose of a vaccine, up from 70.6% on July 15; 55.8% were fully vaccinated on July 22, up from 55.8% on July 15 These percentages include people who reside in Illinois and have been vaccinated in Illinois or in other states. The seven-day average for vaccinations is down to 20,340. (Source: Centers for Disease Control and Illinois Department of Public Health.)

As of July 19, 84.1% of Evanston residents 12 and older had received at least one dose of a vaccine; 77.5% were fully vaccinated. There were only 365 doses of vaccines administered in the week ending July 18. (Source: City of Evanston.)

Delta Variant: According to data published by IDPH, in the last seven days, there were 203 new cases of the Delta variant, comprising about 3.2% of the total new cases in the State in that same period.

On the national level, public health experts continue to express concern about the spread of the Delta variant and the relatively high percentage of people who have not been vaccinated. Some estimates say the Delta variant accounts for more than 80% of all new infections in the United States.

Evanston – COVID

Evanston reported four new COVID-19 cases of Evanston residents today, compared to one yesterday and three on Tuesday.    

There have been a total of 18 new COVID-19 cases of Evanston residents in the last seven days, and a total of 1,528 tests administered to Evanston residents in that same period. The test positivity rate is 1.2%.

There has been a total of 4,668 COVID-19 cases of Evanston residents during the pandemic, 18 of which are active. (Evanston has lowered the total.)

No Evanstonian has died from COVID-19 since May 31. The number of deaths due to COVID-19 is 118.

Impact of Northwestern University. The most recent data on Northwestern University’s website reports that between July 16 and July 22, there were eight new confirmed COVID-19 cases of an NU faculty member, staff member or student. If the faculty member, staff member or student resides in Evanston, the case or cases would be included in the City’s numbers.  


1/ The State moved to Phase 5 of the Restore Illinois Plan on June 11. As of July 1, the RoundTable plans to cover COVID-19 metrics once a week on Thursdays.  Specifically, we plan to provide charts showing: 1) the trends in the number of new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people in two recent seven-day periods for Evanston, Chicago, Suburban Cook County, and the State. The chart also shows the weekly numbers of new cases for each region as of June 10 as a baseline to guage whether cases are going up since the move to Phase 5; and, 2) the most recent test positivity rates for these areas.  

As discussed in footnote 2 below, the CDC recommends that these two measures be used to determine the level of risk of transmission.  If we see a surge in new cases or in the test positivity rates, we will consider covering additional metrics.

We will also report the most recent percentages of vaccinated people, 12 years and older, in Evanston and Illinois.

2/ On Feb. 12, the CDC issued a K-12 School Operational Strategy. As part of that strategy, the report says CDC recommends the use of two measures to determine the level of risk of transmission: 1) the total number of new cases per 100,000 persons in the past 7 days; and 2) the percentage of COVID tests during the last seven days that were positive. The CDC provides a chart to assess whether the risk of transmission is low, moderate, substantial, or high. If the two indicators suggest different levels of risk, CDC says the higher level of risk should be used. The table below, reprinted from CDC’s report, provides CDC’s Indicators and Thresholds for Community Transmission of COVID-219.

CDC’s guidelines are available here: Operational Strategy for K-12 Schools through Phased Prevention | CDC

City’s vaccine information.

Larry Gavin

Larry Gavin was a co-founder of the Evanston RoundTable in 1998 and assisted in its conversion to a non-profit in 2021. He has received many journalism awards for his articles on education, housing and...