Governor Pritzker has issued an executive order requiring all individuals in Illinois over age 2 and able to medically tolerate a face covering (mask or clothing covering) to cover their nose and mouth with a face covering when in a public place and unable to maintain a 6-foot social distance. This requirement applies whether in an indoor space, such as a store, or in a public outdoor space where maintaining a 6-foot social distance is not always possible. This Executive Order is in effect to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 and protect essential workers.
Per the Centers for Disease Control, the virus that causes COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly from person to person, mainly through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. Spread is more likely when people are in close contact with on another (within about 6 feet). It also may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes. Social distancing is recommended to slow the spread of COVID-19.
According to the CDC, symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported -- ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
The list above does not include all possible symptoms and the CDC will continue to update the list as it learns more about COVID-19. Many common illnesses can cause these same symptoms. COVID-19 can only be diagnosed at a laboratory. Individuals who have these symptoms or have had close contact with someone with COVID-19 should contact their doctor or medical professional.
The Illinois Department of Public Health maintains a list of COVID-19 testing sites. Click here or call the COVID-19 testing hotline at 1-800-889-3931.
There are steps individuals can take to help minimize the risk of COVID-19 spread. Common-sense practices during the flu season are recommended:
- Wash your hands frequently
- Avoid touching your face (eyes, nose, mouth) with unwashed hands
- Stay at home if you feel ill and contact a doctor
- Cover coughs and sneezes
- Clean frequently-touched surfaces and objects regularly
- Keep a physical distance of at least six feet from other people
- Currently, there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with food. See CDC's Food Safety site for more information.
In Illinois, anyone with COVID-19- like illness or symptoms can get a test, even without a doctor's order. If you believe you have developed symptoms consistent with COVID-19, testing sites can be found at the Illinois Department of Public Health web site or by calling the COVID-19 testing hotline at 1-800-889-3931.
NorthShore University HealthSystem (operator of Glenbrook Hospital) asks that you access NorthShore Connect, You'll be asked to fill out a form, and the medical team will determine from the symptoms listed whether a COVID-19 test is needed or not. This process ensures patients are evaluated and educated, while also maintaining physical distancing.
Pet care tips
The CDC states that a small number of pets worldwide, including cats and dogs, have been reported to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, mostly after close contact with people with COVID-19. Based on the limited information available to date, the risk of animals spreading COVID-19 to people is considered to be low. The CDC advises that pets should be treated like human family members and should not interact with people or animals outside the household. If a person inside the household becomes sick, isolate that person from everyone else, including pets.
The CDC states that further studies are needed to understand if and how different animals could be affected by the COVID-19 virus. Keep dogs on a leash and maintain required social distancing when walking your dog. In other words, do not let them interact with other people or animals. More information on animals and COVID-19 can be found here.
Please, do not flush wipes or other items that don't belong in a toilet, to avoid clogged water and sewer service lines.
Do not put plastic gloves or medical equipment in recycling carts. As our world battles the COVID-19 pandemic, consumers are using wipes, gloves, and other medical devices to keep their living spaces free of germs. Recyclers report they are seeing these items in the recycling carts.
DO NOT put anything but
these items in your curbside recycling cart. Everything else is "garbage" so throw it away.
- NorthShore University HealthSystem, operator of Glenbrook Hospital and four other area hospitals, has explained how residents and businesses can help, both financially and with donations of critical personal protective equipment.
- Healthy Illinois residents are urged to donate blood to help stem a severe blood shortage due to the coronavirus outbreak.
- Make an appointment with the Red Cross here or call (800) RED-CROSS. Walk-ins are limited.
- Make an appointment with Vitalant (formerly LifeSource).
- To donate personal protective equipment, the state of Illinois asks you email
- The Northfield Township Food Pantry welcomes cash donations to keep helping its clients and has bins outside its office at 2550 Waukegan Road for dropped-off food items. Anyone over age 16 can also volunteer to help out in the pantry.