CHICAGO (CBS) — Almost 5 million people in Illinois have now been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, as the state’s average infection rate has nearly reached the lowest point ever reported during the pandemic.

The Illinois Department of Public Health on Friday reported 1,573 new confirmed and probable coronavirus cases, as well as 21 more deaths. Since the start of the pandemic, Illinois has reported a total of 1,373,457 cases, including 22,556 deaths.

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Illinois is averaging 1,421 new cases per day over the past week, a 40% drop from two weeks ago.

The statewide seven-day average case positivity rate stands at 2.2%, tied for the lowest it’s been since March 13, when Illinois reported a 2.1% infection rate, the lowest reported so far during the pandemic.

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As of Thursday night, a total of 1,426 coronavirus patients were hospitalized in Illinois, the fewest in a single day since April 2. Illinois is averaging 1,516 hospitalizations per day over the past week, a 24% decline from two weeks ago.

Meantime, after dropping sharply for more than three weeks from mid-April through early May, daily vaccination rates in Illinois have largely leveled off in recent weeks. Illinois is averaging 76,812 per day over the past week, up 6% from one week ago, and up 17% from two weeks ago, but still down 42% from the peak on April 12.

Average daily vaccinations have been fluctuating in Illinois in recent weeks, hovering between roughly 57,000 and 87,000 per day since the end of April.

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A total of 4,995,694 people have been fully vaccinated in Illinois as of Thursday night, accounting for 39,21% of the population.

CBS 2 Chicago Staff