Stay Healthy, Skokie - Wear A Mask - Watch Your Distance - Wash Your Hands!

Although Skokie and the rest of Suburban Cook County (Region 10) is no longer at an elevated risk of COVID-19 transmission, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), the community is reminded to stay vigilant about practicing the 3 W's to stay healthy: Wear a Mask - Watch Your Distance - Wash Your Hands. See this short video created by the American Medical Association and other healthcare partners about how to protect your health and the health of your family, friends and entire community.

Contact Tracing Scam Alert

State officials and federal agencies are warning of a new phone scam in which callers pose as COVID-19 contact tracers and try to pry credit card or bank account information from unsuspecting victims. Although the Skokie Health Department has not received any such complaints, residents should be aware that legitimate contact tracers will never request payment, and although they will ask for some identifying information such as address and birthdate, to verify that you are the person they are trying to reach, they will never request a social security number. They also will never disclose the identity of the individual who tested positive and is the starting point for the tracing effort. Read an article from Kaiser Health News for more information.

A Message From the Skokie Health Department About Post-Travel Quarantine

The Skokie Health Department is a state-certified local health department with legal authority over all public health matters in the Village of Skokie.

There are no plans to require or recommend quarantine in Skokie at this time, for people who have been in states where the number of COVID-19 cases is on the rise, consistent with the stance of Governor J. B. Pritzker (Tribune article:  Pritzker: No Plans To Quarantine Visitors From Other States).  

Any business, school or other entity that wishes to require a 14-day quarantine for their own employees who have traveled is able to do so.  There is no prohibition on that action. The Skokie Health Department continues to emphasize the more important messages that everyone should stay home if sick, maintain social distancing and wear face coverings in public settings, and wash hands frequently.  

This is true no matter where a person is - simply spending time in another state, without engaging in risky behaviors, would not be expected to increase an individual's risk of COVID-19 infection.  On the other hand, if you are in Skokie, where new cases of COVID-19 are being identified nearly every day (just as they are in Cook County and Chicago), and choose to participate in large gatherings, do not social distance or wear face coverings then you have substantially increased your risk of infection.

If the situation changes, based on new data, or if there is an Illinois-wide directive issued, the Skokie Health Department will revise its recommendation on quarantine requirements in Skokie.

If you are traveling, see updated guidance from the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Skokie Businesses - See Restore Illinois Phase 4 Guidelines

As of June 26, 2020, Skokie and the surrounding region transitioned to Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois. Skokie is in region 10 of the Restore Illinois plan.The State of Illinois has developed a business toolkit with signage, posters and other resources to ensure business and activities are conducted in accordance with the latest public health recommendations including those of the Skokie Health Department. Phase 4 guidelines include five new industry categories and updated recommendations for the existing categories from Phase 3. Each set of guidelines includes a common set of guidelines that are expected and encouraged among all employers and activity types, as well as workplace and program-specific guidelines. See details of the Phase 4 guidance for businesses.

All Skokie businesses that choose to reopen or expand operations during Phase 4 are required to adhere to the guidelines for their sector. The Skokie Health Department is available to assist businesses with navigating the Restore Illinois Phase 4 Guidance. Please call the Environmental Health team at 847-933-8462 or email if you would like someone to walk through the guidance with you, including making an on-site visit for a consultation. Businesses also are urged to report any cases of COVID-19 in the workforce, so that the health department team can work with you to prevent spread in your facility. All calls will be answered within one business day.  

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  1. Confirmed Cases - September 18, 2020

If you have a fever, cough, or shortness of breath, you may have COVID-19. Please scroll down this page to see the expanded symptoms list in the red Symptoms tab and call NorthShore University HealthSystem’s hotline at 847-432-5849 as soon as possible to be screened for testing. See this information translated in Bulgarian, Chinese (Mandarin, Simplified and Traditional), Farsi, Gujarati, Italian, Korean, Pashto, Polish, Russian, Spanish, Urdu/Hindi and Urdu.

There have been 1,414 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Skokie, with 37 deaths reported. 

These numbers are updated daily at approximately 4 p.m. These are confirmed cases of Skokie residents only. The first Skokie case was identified on March 14, 2020Skokie residents confirmed to have COVID-19 range from three months to 99 years of age. The people who have died range in age from their 30s to their 90s and most had underlying health conditions. For statewide information, visit the IDPH webpage. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), underlying health conditions include but are not limited to asthma, kidney disease, diabetes, liver disease, serious heart conditions, severe obesity and more. See additional information from the CDC.

The following data is updated daily to summarize the number of Skokie residents who are currently ill, and unfortunately, the number of Skokie residents who have passed away due to the illness. People who are recovered or recovering are no longer hospitalized or under isolation. All data points are provisional and accurate as of the date posted; daily case counts may change over time due to corrections in case jurisdiction, testing status, or identification of duplicate cases. 

See daily COVID-19 case count in Skokie from March 14 through May 31, 2020.

See daily COVID-19 case count in Skokie from June 1 to July 31, 2020.

Daily Covid-19 Count, September 18, 2020 (JPG)

Weekly graph showing the Skokie COVID-19 tests by week with the percent positive during August and September 2020

Positivity August through September 2020 (JPG)

It should be noted that there is an increase in COVID-19 cases in Skokie children and teenagers as shown in the graphs below. In August, cases doubled in both age groups, illustrating the importance of continued vigilance with wearing masks, practicing social distancing, avoiding crowds, using thorough hand hygiene and other important safety measures.

From March through July 2020, cases in children age 10 and under were at 2% and were at a 5% level in children and teens ages 10 through 19.

During August 2020, COVID-19 cases in children age 10 and under climbed to 4% and increased to a 10% level in children and teens ages 10 through 19.

These graphs were updated September 15, 2020, and are updated on Tuesday of each week:

If you have a fever, cough, or shortness of breath, you may have COVID-19. Please scroll down this page to see the expanded symptoms list in the red Symptoms tab and call NorthShore University HealthSystem’s hotline at 847-432-5849 as soon as possible to be screened for testing.

  1. Communications Update

UPDATED: September 10, 2020 at 3:12 p.m.  

State of Illinois COVID-19 Mitigation Plan

On July 15, Governor Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Public Health announced a new COVID-19 mitigation plan focused on combating a resurgence of cases will maintaining the progress the state has made towards bending the curve over the last four months. As states across the country experience a surge of new COVID-19 cases, Illinois remains an outlier with lower hospitalization and infection rates and one of the highest rates of testing in the U.S. The resurgence plan recognizes that the state is in its strongest position to combat the virus since the pandemic began, with a robust testing operation regularly yielding more than 30,000 tests per day, expanded tracing operations with 1,450 contact tracers, a growing stockpile of personal protective equipment, and hospital surge capacity. The plan also accounts for months of additional data and research as public health experts reach a greater scientific understanding of this virus and how it spreads.

View the full State of Illinois COVID-19 mitigation plan.

See information about the new Illinois Regional COVID-19 Resurgence Criteria. Skokie is in Region 10.

COVID-19 Antibody Testing Information and Resources

An antibody test, which is a blood test, can show if you had a past infection with the virus that causes COVID-19.  If you were ill with symptoms of COVID-19 since February 2020 and were not able to get tested, it might be useful to get an antibody test now to verify that you had the virus.  The antibody test does not diagnose a current infection with COVID-19. See information on local resources for COVID-19 antibody testing.

Not Feeling Well?

If you have a fever, cough or are short of breath, you might have COVID-19. If you are over age 60 or have underlying health conditions, you are at higher risk for serious complications from the disease. If you are at high risk and have any COVID-19 symptoms, please call the NorthShore University HealthSystem community health hotline at 847-432-5849 to be screened for a COVID-19 test

Most people have mild illness and are able to recover at home. Keep track of your symptoms. If you have an emergency warning sign (including trouble breathing), please call your physician or contact the NorthShore University HealthSystem community health hotline at 847-432-5849.

If you do not have a physician, please contact one of Skokie’s partner healthcare agencies serving uninsured and underinsured Skokie residents. See the list of providers here.

There are cases of COVID-19 throughout the community and the Skokie Health Department encourages all residents to wear cloth face coverings in public settings, practice good hand washing hygiene, etc. According to the CDC, recent evidence indicates that up to 25% of people with COVID-19 infection may not have symptoms and can still spread the disease. It is very important that you stay at home, even if you feel well.

Contact Tracing Information and Certification Programs 

Contact tracing is a specialized skill that requires training, and involves a bit of detective work, where people who have tested positive for COVID-19 are interviewed to determine everyone with whom they have had close contact during the time while they were infectious. Those individuals are then notified of their exposure, and the actions they should take to limit further spread of the disease. To protect privacy, contacts are only informed that they have been exposed to someone with the infection, not the identity of the person.

Skokie residents interested in serving as contact tracers need to take a certification course. Here is more information from the State of Illinois:

“The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is seeking interested individuals to support local public health authorities to perform COVID-19 contact tracing. This recruitment effort is developing through partnership with the state, local public health authorities, healthcare entities and community-based organizations. Hiring Contact Tracers will depend on the needs of the local public health authorities and by region of the state. Completing this form does not represent the promise of a job or job interview with the State of Illinois or any other entity.”

 Fill out the form below.

Additional questions can be directed to

Here is information on two online contact tracing certification courses:

Oakton Community College offers a "Public Health Contact Tracing Paraprofessional" course. See the OCC website for more information.

The Association of State and Territorial Health Officials is offering "Making Contact: A Training for COVID-19 Contact Tracers", a free introductory online course for entry-level COVID-19 contact tracers. See additional information.

The Village of Skokie has hired contact tracers and currently is not hiring additional staff for this purpose.

contact tracing graphic (JPG)

Print an 8.5" by 11" Skokie Stay-At-Home, Save Lives window poster.
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Skokie Health Department Monitoring Situation

Skokie Health Department staff, with assistance from numerous other Village departments and divisions, continue to work hard on Skokie’s COVID-19 response. Each day, Skokie Health Department staff are in contact with the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). An inter-disciplinary, internal team of Village department and division managers meets regularly to review information updates and plan the Village’s continued COVID-19 response.  

The Skokie Health Department is working closely with Skokie Hospital, the IDPH and other community partners to investigate all cases. Due to confidentiality requirements, no additional information about specific cases of COVID-19 will be provided. The community is encouraged to continue following all of the requirements to wear cloth face coverings, practice social distancing and to practice good hand hygiene.

Useful Links

Heartland Health Centers Skokie COVID-19 Testing Information - English version and Spanish version

Please watch this video with helpful information about the COVID-19 virus.

CDC Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

Illinois Department of Public Health

COVID-19 Information in Arabic, Chinese, English, Korean, Polish, Russian, Spanish and Urdu

Read SkokieNews email newsletters from February 28, 2020 to present

Guidance for Grocery Shopping During the COVID-19 Pandemic from IDPH

  1. Symptoms
  2. How it Spreads
  3. Prevention
  4. What to Do if You Are Sick
  5. What to Know if You Call 9-1-1
  6. Important Information on Refuse and Recycling during COVID-19
  7. Travel Information
  8. Cloth Face Covering Info and Resources

Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death. Symptoms can include:

  • Loss or decrease in the sense of smell
  • Loss or decrease of the sense of taste
  • Fever – temperature of 100 or higher
  • Cough
  • Congestion
  • Runny nose
  • Sore throat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Flu-like body aches

Symptoms may appear 2–14 days after exposure. According to the CDC, recent evidence indicates that up to 25% of people with COVID-19 infection may not have symptoms and can still spread the disease.  It is very important that you stay home, even if you feel well.

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Help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases like COVID-19 graphic