Deaths of man in his 20s, four other Sangamon County residents with COVID-19 reported

Dean Olsen
State Journal-Register
As of Wednesday afternoon, 53.5% of Illinois' population was fully vaccinated, and an almost identical share of Sangamon County residents have been vaccinated, according to data from the Illinois Department of Public Health. [Justin L. Fowler/The State Journal-Register]

A man in his 20s and four other Sangamon County residents with COVID-19 have died, county officials said this week.

The new COVID-19 fatalities, among data from the three-day Labor Day weekend, as well as Tuesday and Wednesday, included the youngest person from Sangamon County yet to die with COVID-19 since the pandemic began in spring 2020. This was the first death of a county resident younger than 30.

The newly reported deaths included a woman in her 60s who tested positive for COVID-19 on July 28 and died Sept. 3; a man in his 70s who tested positive Aug. 23 and died Sept. 5; a woman in her 30s who tested positive July 29 and died Sept. 4, and a man in his 80s who tested positive Aug. 19 and died Sept. 7.

More:Sangamon County reports 3 COVID-19 deaths in last 3 days, 2 people in their 30s among them

The man in his 20s, who tested positive for COVID-19 Aug. 24 and died that same day, was unvaccinated, as were all of the others except for the woman in her 60s, who was fully vaccinated, according to the Sangamon County Department of Public Health

The health department classifies someone as unvaccinated if he or she has not received the recommended two doses for the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines or one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Department officials said 350 new COVID-19 cases among Sangamon County residents were reported over the past five days: 71 on Saturday, 64 on Sunday, 85 on Monday, 68 on Tuesday and 62 on Wednesday.

The date that new cases are reported aren’t necessarily the same as when lab confirmations of positive results take place. It can take several days for results to make their way to the health department and then onto daily case counts, county spokesman Jeff Wilhite said.

More:'There’s been a striking increase.' Unvaccinated fuel Springfield's hospitalization surge

Forty-four Sangamon County residents with COVID-19 remained hospitalized Wednesday, as did two Menard County residents. Eighteen new COVID-19 cases among Menard residents were reported between Saturday and Wednesday.

Health department officials have said COVID-19 vaccine drastically reduces a person’s chance of requiring hospitalization or dying from COVID-19.

Vaccinations also reduce a person’s chance of being infected with COVID-19, though officials say the spread of the delta variant among unvaccinated people is making it more likely that vaccinated people experience “breakthrough” infections.

The five COVID-19 deaths reported so far in September compares with 11 COVID-19 deaths of Sangamon County residents in all of August and three in July, county health officials said.

Earlier:Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker reinstates indoor mask mandate for public places

August’s death toll matched the 11 deaths reported in February. 

The peak in deaths of county residents was 60 in December, followed by 43 in January and 35 in November, the health department said.

The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 62 COVID-19 deaths statewide Wednesday as a one-day total.

A total of 23,413 Sangamon County residents have tested positive for COVID-19, and 253 have died. A total of 1,492 Menard County residents have tested positive, and seven have died.

Almost 24,200 Illinoisans with COVID-19 have died.

IDPH says 53.5% of Illinoisans, and an almost identical share of Sangamon County residents, have been fully vaccinated. Local and state officials said they have been frustrated in recent weeks by the relatively slow pace of vaccinations for people 12 and older, the age group eligible for vaccine.

COVID-19 vaccinations continue to be offered by the Sangamon County Department of Public Health, by Memorial Health System, Hospital Sisters Health System, pharmacies and in many doctors' offices. More information about vaccination sites is available online at scdph.org.

The Swaminarayan Gurukul Temple at 3150 Chatham Road in Springfield will be the site of a one-day vaccination clinic for the public, with Pfizer-BioNTech shots available at no charge. The walk-in clinic will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 15, and each person receiving a shot will get a $10 Subway gift card.

Contact Dean Olsen: dolsen@gannett.com; (217) 836-1068; twitter.com/DeanOlsenSJR.