The coronavirus is a serious public health threat. It is important that you are aware of the disease and the efforts necessary to prevent its spread. As COVID-19 vaccines become available, it is important to get vaccinated in order to curb the spread of the virus and save lives.
Vaccines to protect against the coronavirus have been approved for widespread use and are being distributed to states. Click here to learn more about the State of Illinois’ vaccine plan.
The U.S. vaccine safety system is designed to ensure that all vaccines are as safe as possible. The COVID-19 vaccines that have been approved for use have gone through rigorous clinical trials and are monitored through existing and expanded safety monitoring systems. Please visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s website for more information and data on how the benefits of receiving an approved vaccine greatly outweigh the potential harms of being infected with COVID-19.
COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution
Illinois is currently in Phase 1B of vaccination. This category includes front line workers and/or any adults age 65 and older. Click here to learn more about Illinois' vaccination phases and who qualifies in each phase.
Vaccines are currently being distributed through county health departments, the Veterans Administration, local health providers, pharmacies, and through federally run mass vaccination sites.
See the Illinois Department of Public Health vaccination locator webpage to find vaccination sites near you. Please note that vaccines are currently in limited supply and scheduling an appointment might take time.
Local Health Departments
Each county has a slightly different process for vaccine sign up, with some counties using sign up forms and others using email notification systems. Visit your county’s health department website to learn more. Counties located in IL-11 are listed with the appropriate link for vaccine distribution information here:
If you are a veteran, you can sign up for your vaccine through the VA. Click here to learn more.
Your local health or hospital provider may be able to help you with scheduling a vaccine appointment. Reach out to your primary health or hospital provider to learn more.
The following pharmacies are administering vaccines in Illinois, check appointment availability using following links:
Federal Legislative Action
The Federal Government passed the CARES Act on March 27, 2020 and the Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 on December 27, 2020, which extends and modifies many of the key components of the CARES Act. Important changes and provisions of the Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act include:
Direct cash payments of up to $600 for individuals and $1,200 for couples, as well as $600 per child.
Enhanced unemployment insurance, including an additional $300 per week on top of assistance provided by the State of Illinois.
Extension of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, a program aimed at freelancers and independent contractors, providing an additional $100 per week
An additional $285 billion added to the initial $350 billion Payroll Protection Program for small businesses
$25 billion in rental assistance for those struggling to pay rent
Student loan debt relief, which suspended loan payments, stopped collections on defaulted loans, and set interest rates to 0% for a period of 60 days until at least September 30, 2021
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act contains several important provisions, including:
Free coronavirus testing
Enhanced unemployment insurance
Paid sick leave for many Americans
Expanded food assistance programs
Increased Medicaid benefits
Waived Medicare copays for COVID-19 testing
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac have suspended evictions and foreclosures during the outbreak.
And, the United States Small Business Administration has approved Illinois' request for a disaster declaration. All Illinois small businesses affected by the COVID-19 crisis are now eligible to apply for low-interest disaster relief loans at disaster loan.sba.gov, which can help make ends meet during this difficult period of time.
Illinois has ramped up its efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 in our communities. Governor Pritzker launched coronavirus.illinois.gov to serve as a hub for all Illinois coronavirus updates and news.
The global coronavirus pandemic is significantly affecting travel. International travel has been restricted - you should check with your airline for the most up-to-date information about flight schedules. Domestic flight schedules have also been affected, contact your airline for updates. The latest travel guidance from the CDC can be found here.
Experts have been working hard to understand this new strain of coronavirus. Because new information is coming out every day, please visit the sites below to stay up to date.
The Centers for Disease Control provides updates on the virus and safety information for the public and healthcare professionals.
The Illinois Department of Health provides updates on the disease's spread within the state, as well as frequently asked questions available here.
The State Department provides a list of travel advisories for those who are planning to fly outside of the United States.
More information about small business resources during this COVID-19 outbreak can be found here.
More information about unemployment insurance and benefits during this COVID-19 outbreak can be found here.
More information about resources available for your family during this time can be found here.
The safety of you and your loved ones is of the utmost importance. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to call my office at (202) 225-3515.