Officials: Chicago resident is Illinois’ 1st omicron case

December 8, 2021 GMT

CHICAGO (AP) — A Chicago resident has been confirmed with Illinois’ first known case of the omicron variant of COVID-19, state and city health officials said.

The Illinois Department of Public Health and the Chicago Department of Public Health said Tuesday night the Chicago resident had contact with someone with a confirmed omicron case who visited the city from another state.

Cases of the omicron variant have been reported in about one-third of U.S. states.

The Chicago resident, who had been fully vaccinated and also had received a booster dose, did not require hospitalization and “is improving and has been self-isolating since their symptoms began,” the health agencies said in a news release.

Officials said contact tracing is underway. Additional information about the Chicago resident cannot be released to safeguard their identity as well as protected health information, they said.


Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said city and state health officials “continue to closely monitor the Omicron variant and work with medical experts to better inform our residents.”

Lightfoot, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker and health officials urged Chicago and Illinois residents to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and get their booster shot.

“As long as the virus continues to circulate, it has the potential to mutate into new variants. Vaccination can help stop circulation, but we need more people to get vaccinated,” said Illinois Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike.

U.S. health officials have said that early indications suggest the omicron variant, which was first detected in South Africa, may be less dangerous than the delta variant, which continues to drive a surge of hospitalizations.