Chicago Adds Nine New States to Travel Advisory List as Delta Variant Cases Rise

Chicago added nine new states to its travel advisory list on Tuesday amid an increase of COVID-19 Delta variant cases.

According to a statement issued by the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) the new states added to the city's travel advisory list include Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Kansas, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, and Wyoming.

"There are now 14 states and one territory on the City's Travel Advisory," CDPH said in the update. "These states all have surpassed the mark of 15 cases per day, per 100,000 residents."

In addition to the nine new states added on Tuesday, Chicago has previously issued a travel advisory for Arkansas, Missouri, Louisiana, Florida and Nevada. The U.S. Virgin Islands are also listed under Chicago's travel advisory as they have surpassed 15 daily new cases per 100,000 residents.

"Any unvaccinated people traveling from these states and territories are advised to obtain a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 72 hours prior to arrival in Chicago or quarantine for a 10-day period upon arrival. Vaccinated individuals do not need to quarantine or receive a negative test," CDPH said in the update.

While all of the states under the city's travel advisory are recording over 15 new daily cases per 100,000 residents, at least eight of the 14 are reporting more than 20 new daily cases per 100,000 residents. According to data published by the CDPH, Arkansas is currently reporting 52.4 daily cases per 100,000 residents, which is the most across all 14 states.

At least five other states are at risk of being placed on Chicago's travel advisory list, including Hawaii, Georgia, Utah, Kentucky and South Carolina, as they are all currently reporting more than 10 new daily cases per 100,000 residents.

In a tweet on Tuesday after the nine states were added to the city's travel advisory list, CDPH Commissioner Allison Arwady stressed the importance of getting vaccinated against the novel virus.

"People who are unvaccinated by far have the highest risk of contracting COVID, and the number one way for us to stop the spread of COVID is to get vaccinated and to encourage everyone we know to get their vaccinations. Vaccines are safe and effective," Arwady wrote in the tweet.

People who are unvaccinated by far have the highest risk of contracting COVID, and the number one way for us to stop the spread of COVID is to get vaccinated and to encourage everyone we know to get their vaccinations. Vaccines are safe and effective.

— Dr. Allison Arwady (@DrArwady) July 27, 2021

The update by CDPH on Tuesday comes as numerous states have seen a rise in COVID-19 cases due to the highly transmissible Delta variant.

White House pandemic response coordinator Jeff Zients said during a press briefing last week that 40 percent of all new cases in the U.S. were recorded in Florida, Missouri and Texas, all of which are on Chicago's travel advisory list.

Last week, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said that the Delta variant makes up at approximately 83 percent of all COVID-19 cases in the U.S.

Newsweek reached out to the CDPH for further comment on the travel advisory update but did not receive a response in time for publication.

Chicago Travel Advisory
On Tuesday, July 27, Chicago added nine new states to its travel advisory list amid a surge of COVID-19 cases. Above, closed Chicago Theatre is seen in Chicago, Illinois, on March 21, 2020 Kamil Krzaczynski/Getty