The Village of Oak Park | 123 Madison St.  Oak Park, IL 60302 | village@oak-park.us

Main menu

STAY CONNECTED

Many ways to reduce spread of COVID-19

Oak Park health officials are calling on residents to work together to limit COVID-19 related disruptions in the community, particularly in schools where students who test positive miss out on in-person instruction as a result of needing to quarantine.

Based on the latest case data, the community transmission rate is high in Oak Park and the surrounding area. Oak Park health officials note that 40 percent of cases among residents reported the week of Sept. 16-22 were among children age 11 and younger who are not yet eligible to be vaccinated.

Health officials say layering the COVID-19 mitigation strategies that have proven effective during the pandemic is the key to ensuring that kids stay in school. As the highly transmissible Delta variant continues to spread, the following recommendations can help limit community spread:

  • Get vaccinated – Getting a COVID-19 vaccine decreases your chances of getting the virus. While breakthrough cases may occur, vaccinated people are less likely to contract the virus than unvaccinated people. Vaccines are safe and effective and available for free to everyone age 12 and older. Find information about local vaccination opportunities at www.oak-park.us/vaccine. Parents of young children who are not eligible to be vaccinated are urged to receive the vaccine to reduce the chances of spreading the virus to their kids. Click here for more information about COVID-19 vaccines.
     
  • Limit high-risk exposures – Local health officials recommend unvaccinated people, especially those too young to be vaccinated, avoid high-risk exposures such as indoor dining with mixed households, parties, noisy crowded areas and contact sports.
     
  • Test at the sign of any symptom, no matter how small – Testing remains critically important to reducing the spread of COVID-19. Health officials say if you have symptoms or have had a known exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19, you should be tested regardless of your vaccination status. When using an at-home test, health offiicals urge individuals to also get a confirmatory PCR or NAAT test. Click here for more information about COVID-19 testing.
     
  • Quarantine and isolate when necessary – The CDC recommends that individuals quarantine if they have been in close contact (within 6 feet of someone for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period) with someone who has COVID-19. People who are fully vaccinated do NOT need to quarantine after contact with someone who had COVID-19 unless they have symptoms. However, fully vaccinated people should get tested 3-5 days after their exposure, even if they don’t have symptoms and wear a mask indoors in public for 14 days following exposure or until their test result is negative.
     
  • Wear masks indoors and in crowded outdoor settings - Everyone over the age of two is required to wear a mask in all public indoor settings across Illinois. Health officials also recommend wearing masks outdoors in circumstances where it is not possible to maintain at least a 6-foot distance from other individuals not from the same household. Click here for more information about how masks slow the spread of COVID-19.
     
  • Maintain social distance – Health officials recommend keeping 6 feet distance between yourself and people who don’t live in your household. Keep in mind that people without symptoms may be able to spread the virus. Click here for more information about protecting yourself from COVID-19.
     
  • Willingly participate in contact tracing - Anyone who receives a call from the Oak Park Public Health Department or any certified health department may have tested positive for COVID-19 or had close contact with someone who has tested positive for the highly contagious coronavirus. The importance of answering or returning the call can't be overemphasized, because you could be at risk of becoming ill or spreading the virus unknowingly. Click here for more information about the importance of contact tracing.
     
  • Cohort or work from home to limit exposures – Oak Park health officials recommend working in cohorts or working from home when possible to help prevent and reduce COVID-19 transmission.
     
  • Increase air flow and ventilation in shared spaces – Health officials say bringing fresh, outdoor air into your home or workspace helps keep virus particles from accumulating inside. Click here for information about improving ventilation.

For the latest information about COVID-19 in Oak Park, visit www.oak-park.us/covid19 or email health@oak-park.us.