Region 6 on Monday afternoon left Tier 3 and went directly to Tier 1 following the Illinois Department of Public Health adjusting metrics which allows more regions to lift strict mitigations.
For central Illinois, Tier 1 mitigations will affect Iroquois, Ford, Dewitt, Piatt, Champaign, Vermillion, Macon, Moultrie, Douglas, Edgar, Shelby, Coles, Cumberland, Clark, Fayette, Effingham, Jasper, Crawford, Clay, Richland, and Lawrence counties, which make up Region 6.
In a news release, officials said the state launched multiple health care staffing contracts to increase staff in hospitals. IDPH adjusted its mitigation metrics to reflect that change.
“With the change, Regions 1 and 6 have met the required metrics to move to Tier 1,” said IDPH. “Regions 8,9, 10, and 11 will move from the most restrictive Tier 3 to Tier 2. In addition, Regions 3 and 5 have met the metrics to return to Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois Plan,” IDPH officials stated.
Hospital leaders and local health departments told IDPH their primary capacity challenge and concern was a need for more staffing. They told IDPH state-facilitated staffing contracts would be critical in addressing that issue.
The mitigation metrics adjustment recognized “substantial progress” the state has made since Tier 3 mitigations were put in place back in November.
Hospitals with rooms available to increase capacity but lacking the staff can partner with the state to gain more help.
With new variants of COVID-19 spreading, it is more important than ever to follow the public health guidance that keeps people safe- – wear a mask and watch your distance.