COVID-19 updates

COVID-19 updates

by Kyla Hurt

The State of Illinois Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response website,, lists that as of the update on August 16 at noon, Illinois had: 206,081 positive tests confirmed tests; 7,744 deaths; and 3,366,851 tests performed. The site notes that of those numbers, “**Total tests performed and reported electronically for testing of COVID-19 at IDPH, commercial or hospital laboratories.

Deaths are included in the number of positive cases. All numbers displayed are provisional and subject to change. Information regarding the number of people under investigation updated on 8/16/2020. Information to be updated daily.”

COVID-19 positive cases have increased locally. With the jump in confirmed positive cases, we are sharing current information and resources available to the public surrounding the pandemic.

At, the Morgan County Health Department (MCHD) has a tab at the top to take one to all thing COVID-19-related. Once having clicked on that tab, the page offers a link to current statistics. There is also a blue, rectangular banner hyperlink that takes those interested to what is being referred to as “Clara: the CDC Coronavirus Self-Checker” on the MCHD page, ultimately redirecting them to the checker on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s page. Prior to redirection, one sees a heading above the banner questioning, “Feeling sick?” which is followed with a brief description of the self-checker that claims to help you decide when to call your doctor, toting, “Answer a few simple question and learn what you need to do next so you can protect yourself and others.”

Of course, this is not a test and simply a guide to aid those who think they might need to be tested. It is a good question. When does one need to be tested? Generally, this could include: those who are symptomatic, essential workers and qualifying individuals who have had known contact with a confirmed COVID positive case, explains the MCHD site.

Other persons who would be tested are those individuals who will be having a medical procedure; the testing provider should arrange the COVID-19 testing prior to the medical procedure, however.

COVID-19 testing does require an appointment. To schedule, call 1-217-479-1817; scheduling phone line is open Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 9 a.m. until noon.

The Jacksonville/Morgan County Office of Emergency Management (OEM) directs those wanting COVID-19 resources and restoration plans to also visit It is there one finds the release of information that the Morgan County Health Department started offering COVID-19 testing at its new location. To pull from the press release according to MCHD Director Dale Bainter, “The new location is parking lot A on the campus of Passavant Area Hospital … Individuals must schedule their appointment by calling our testing hotline, 217-479-1817, on Tuesday or Wednesday, from 9 a.m. to noon. Appointments will be scheduled for the following day.”

The release noted that this new testing site began on Wednesday, July 29, and is only available on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Further clarification from the press release included: “Parking lot A is located on the west side of the Passavant campus, just north of the Emergency Department. Individuals should use the Westgate entrance and proceed north to the parking lot A. Passavant is located at 1600 W. Walnut Ave. Individuals with appointments should arrive as close to their scheduled time as possible. Medical assessment or treatment will not be available. For additional information on COVID-19, visit”

“The City of Jacksonville continues to monitor the Coronavirus (COVID-19) daily and is committed to providing local, state and federal up-to-date information to keep our residents informed,” notes

As a reminder, masks are required at Morgan County Health Department, with entrance by appointment only. Please call 217-245-5111 with any questions. Masks are required at many area businesses – directly contact any business to inquire about their policy.

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About the author

Kyla Hurt is a capable boondoggler trained in the arts; she’s also an accomplished event coordinator with experience from museum fundraising to art festivals. She enjoys puppies, sunshine, and good radishes – and wit. Wit is good, too.

View all articles by Kyla Hurt