CHICAGO — More than 60 counties are reporting elevated community levels of COVID-19, up from 46 counties last week, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.

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Of the 63 Illinois counties reporting community levels, 12 counties are considered high and 51 are medium. Cook, DuPage, Lake and McHenry counties are among those counties reflecting medium levels.

Over the past week, IDPH has reported 20,495 new, confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 in Illinois and 57 deaths.

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The spike in cases is expected, says IDPH Director Dr. Sameer Vohra and Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady, noting colder weather and respiratory illnesses.

Health officials say COVID-19 and flu vaccines are widely available across the state. Anyone interested may find more information at vaccines.gov

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State health officials urge anyone who feels ill to stay home and seek treatment if symptoms worsen.