Chicago, Cook County Elevated to ‘Medium’ COVID Community Level Status – NBC Chicago

After one week at “low” COVID community level status, both Chicago and suburban Cook County have shifted back to “medium” following a rise in metrics, such as hospitalizations, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In a news release, the Chicago Department of Public Health explained Cook County is just above the threshold to be considered at a “medium” community level, with the increase reflecting the burden felt by area hospitals. Chicago and Cook County were at “low” COVID community level status the most recent week ending Nov. 18, but listed at the “medium” level the week before.

Along with an uptick in COVID metrics, both Chicago and the U.S. as a whole are seeing a surge in respiratory viruses, such as influenza and RSV. And with more large gatherings expected to take place through the holidays, CDPH is advising everyone to get an updated COVID-19 booster and flu shot as soon as possible.

“…And with more time with loved ones over this holiday season, there will be more opportunities for viruses to take hold,” CDPH stated.

COVID and flu vaccines are “widely available” at pharmacies across Chicago, officials say. In addition, vaccinations are are being offered every Sunday at the Swap-O-Rama, 4100 S. Ashland Ave., from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

You don’t even have to leave your home to get vaccinated – at least in the city. Through the Protect Chicago at Home program, COVID and flu vaccines will be brought to any resident’s home and administered at no cost. Up to 10 people can be vaccinated in a single appointment, according to CDPH. In addition, Chicagoans 6 months old and above can receive a flu shot if at least one household member is getting a COVID shot.