Health Department Coronavirus Update 0323

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LCHD 2017




For Immediate Release
Date: March 23, 2020
Media Email:
Media Phone: 847-377-2001

Health Department Coronavirus Update

Lake County, Ill. — The Lake County Health Department is reporting 12 new cases of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Lake County since Sunday afternoon. This brings the total number of Lake County residents testing positive for the disease to 92 since the first Lake County case was identified on March 11, 2020.

People are urged to continue to follow Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s order to stay at home and practice social distancing. Social distancing is increasing the physical space between people to slow the spread of illness. Staying at least six feet away from others lessens your chance of spreading or catching COVID-19. Simple ways to practice social distancing include avoiding crowds, working from home, visiting loved ones by electronic means instead of in person, and cancelling scheduled gatherings, playdates, and meetings.  

It is safe to assume that COVID-19 is in every community in Lake County, and we all need to physically distance ourselves from each other,” said Mark Pfister, Executive Director of the Lake County Health Department. “We all have a role in protecting the people we love and those who are most at risk by the rapid spread of this disease – older adults, people living with chronic health conditions, and let’s not forget our first responders and healthcare workers.” 

Through social distancing, fewer people will become ill at once, and with fewer patients requiring medical care each dayhealthcare workers and first responders are better equipped to keep up with adequate supplies, healthcare providers, and hospital bed capacity. 

Testing for COVID-19 in Illinois is only available to high-risk individuals, including people currently hospitalized and those who live or work in congregate settings like long-term care facilities or group homes.  


On Friday, March 20th, Governor Pritzker issued Executive Order 2020-10 requiring all Illinoisans to stay in their homes to prevent the further spread of COVID-19.  For more information, please visit: 

It is critically important that the community follow prescribed preventative measures such as social distancing and the 3 C’s to avoid getting sick: 

  • Clean hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol; 
  • Cover your cough and sneeze with a tissue or your elbow; and 
  • Contain illness by staying home if you are sick. 
Social Distancing 
  • Stay home as much as possible. 
  • Call to check on family, neighbors, and older adults instead of visiting. 
  • Check with your healthcare provider about telehealth options. 

What to do if you are sick 

If you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or shortness of breath, stay home and call your doctor. Distance yourself from others in the household and if possible, stay in your own bedroom and use your own bathroom. Seek medical care right away if your illness is worsening (for example, you have difficulty breathing).   

Do not walk into a healthcare facility, urgent care clinic, or hospital before calling. Discuss your symptoms with your doctor.  If your doctor believes that you need to be tested for COVID-19, your doctor should refer you to a COVID-19 testing site. The Lake County Health Department should only be contacted to facilitate testing through the State lab for patients who are hospitalized or those who live or work in congregate settings (e.g., schools, long term care facilities, and group homes). 

Residents who do not have a primary care provider can contact the Lake County Health Department and Community Health Center at (847) 377-8800 to schedule an appointment. 

Testing availability 

Testing is being prioritized for people with symptoms who have high risk of complications. This includes older adults living in congregate settings and those with chronic health conditions like heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes, and those with weakened immune systems. People who do not show any symptoms do not need to get tested. 

A number of healthcare providers in Lake County currently have tests available. The Public Health Emergency Operations Center (PHEOC) is working to collect information on the availability of testing in Lake County and will provide updates at as it becomes available. 

Additional resources 

Visit for updates on COVID-19 in Lake County, guidance on preventing the spread of COVID-19, and to sign up for the Lake County Health Department’s COVID-19 email newsletter. 

The Health Department has established an email address:, to answer general questions from the community. Residents can submit an email with general COVID-19 questions, and public health officials will answer the top questions weekly. The Health Department will not use this service to offer medical advice or answer questions related to people who test positive for COVID-19. If you have personal medical questions, contact your healthcare provider. 

For a list of government closures, visit: 

Additional resource if you need assistance: 

If you need assistance finding food, shelter, rent or utility assistance, or other essential services, CALL 211 or TEXT your zip code to 898211 to speak with someone who can help 24/7. For more information, visit 

For general state and national information, please call the Illinois State Hotline at 1-800-899-3931, or visit the Illinois Department of Public Health website at, or the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website at 

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Lake County Health Department
3010 Grand Avenue
Waukegan, Illinois 60085
(847) 377-8000