CHICAGO (CBS) — Test kits are in short supply and that’s not all we’re learning about the evolving fight against coronavirus in Illinois.
As CBS 2’s Marissa Parra reported Tuesday, it is a fluid situation and numbers seem to change by the day.
Out of 116 people that have been tested for coronavirus so far, 21 results were pending as of Tuesday night. One possible patient at the University of Chicago Medical Center tested negative for coronavirus, the hospital confirmed.
Out of the four positive results so far, the third and fourth were announced in the last few days. A husband and wife in their 70s both tested positive for coronavirus, but the results still need to be confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
At a state public health hearing, testing isn’t as simple as it sounds. The Department of Health and Human Services promised tens of thousands of testing kits to states around the country but it’s not known how many kits will go to Illinois. Right now, the state has roughly 2,200 kits.
The state’s public health director, Doctor Ngozi Ezike, said that’s not enough to screen everyone who comes through the hospital with flu-like symptoms, but tests negative for the flu.
“Certain emergency departments will soon begin testing select patients who present with flu-like symptoms and test them for COVID-19,” said Ezike.
She will be lobbying in Washington D.C. for more testing kits and funding on Wednesday.
And when it comes to preparedness, the IDPH said it’s never a bad idea to stockpile on basics like food, toilet paper and bottled water just in case.
City leaders met Tuesday for what’s called a ‘tabletop exercise.’ Don’t let the name fool you. They’ve gathered to discuss all kinds of worst case scenarios. That includes school closures and what to do if businesses have to do teleworking.