DePaul University freezing tuition | COVID-19 blog for April 2

Coronavirus

Information in the COVID-19 pandemic is evolving rapidly, so to help keep WGN viewers informed with the latest updates, follow our live blog for April 2, 2020.

These updates will mostly focus on the Chicago area, but will include some national and international news as well.

A full list and explanation of the stay-at-home order and essential businesses is available here.

Newest updates are at the top of this post.

3:45 p.m.

DePaul University announced they are freezing tuition for the 2020-2021 academic year to ease the financial burden on families during the pandemic.

In a press release, the school said they will not increase tuition for 2020-2021 for new and continuing students and said they will offer support from a $266 million financial aid pool.

DePaul students will soon receive official notice of the tuition rates. For more information, visit DePaul’s website.

2:30 p.m.

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) said Thursday it confirmed 715 new cases of coronavirus disease, and 16 additional deaths.

IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike said 85 percent of deaths are among individuals 60 years of age and older, but noted “no one is immune” to the virus.

Governor JB Pritzker criticized the federal response Thursday, saying national measures and stay-at-home guidelines took too long.

“This will go down in history as a profound failure of our national government,” Pritzker said.

Watch Above: Illinois Governor JB Pritzker and health officials speak about the spread of coronavirus and measures taken by the state Thursday

2 p.m.

The Will County Health Department says a total of 16 employees have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to a statement Tuesday.

The department closed its main office and most branches Monday after finding one positive case, although community health centers in Bolingbrook and Joliet continue to see patients.

12:45 p.m.

Physicians Immediate Care says it will begin rapid testing for COVID-19 at its clinics, starting with first responders and healthcare workers, “within the week.” Seniors and other high-risk individuals will get priority after that.

The immediate care chain already offers curbside service to people experiencing symptoms of the coronavirus, so they can be checked for the virus in their cars while avoiding waiting rooms.

In a statement, the company said it will be the first in Illinois to offer the new test by Abbott Labs, which can deliver results in “as little as 5 minutes.”

12:30 p.m.

The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office says it is adding more refrigerated storage to ensure it is “prepared for any eventuality” due to COVID-19.

“While we hope we do not need to use the additional facility, we have the responsibility to provide adequate space for all decedents under our jurisdiction to ensure they are treated with dignity,” said Cook County spokesperson Natalia Derevyanny.

11:05 a.m.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot and the Chicago Police Department are holding a news conference following reports that an officer diagnosed with COVID-19 has died. You can watch it live here.

10 a.m.

Cook County Board President held a news conference about emergency relief efforts for small businesses, not-for-profits and independent contractors. You can watch the press conference in the player below:

9:30 a.m.

The Indiana State Department of Health announced Monday a state total of 3,039 coronavirus cases and 78 deaths.

8:40 a.m.

The University of Illinois at Chicago is participating in two clinical trials for COVID-19 treatments. In one trial, launched this week, a team from UIC is studying a drug previously approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for treating rheumatoid arthritis. The drug is called sarilumab.

In another trial, launched last week, UIC researchers are investigating an antiviral drug previously studied as a treatment for Ebola in hospitalized patients with COVID-19. The drug is called remdesivir and the trial is funded by the National Institutes of Health. 

8:30 a.m.

Tinley Park news publisher, a leader in the Arab American community, has died of a suspected case of COVID-19, according to The Daily Southtown.

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