Leading the charge against COVID-19

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The University of Illinois System is leading the charge in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic—from innovative testing solutions, to clinical trials for vaccines and treatments, to pioneering new research and innovations, to providing resources and assistance for our communities, and more.
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  • Michael LeRoy

    Work-refusal safety laws serve employees poorly during pandemic

    A new paper from a University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign expert in labor law shows that current work-refusal laws are out-of-step with modern workplaces and provided meager benefits to employees who have refused to work when risks involved chemicals, radiation and other microscopic or invisible hazards such as COVID-19.

  • Bin Jiang, Yi Lu and William Sullivan

    Study finds green spaces linked to lower racial disparity in COVID-19 infection rates

    A higher ratio of green spaces at the county level is associated with a lower racial disparity in coronavirus infection rates, according to a new study. 

  • Pamela Martinez

    Study maps COVID-19 health disparities in Greater Santiago

    People up to age 40 living in economically depressed municipalities in the Greater Santiago, Chile, metropolitan area were three times more likely to die as a result of the infection than their counterparts in wealthier areas, researchers report in the journal Science. 

  • close up of dental instruments in mouth of patient

    Study: 2% of asymptomatic pediatric dental patients test positive for COVID-19

    A study by a University of Illinois Chicago pediatric dentist has shown a novel way to track potential COVID-19 cases — testing children who visit the dentist. The study also showed an over 2% positivity rate for the asymptomatic children tested. 

  • UIC Government Finance Research Center logo

    New reports address COVID-19’s fiscal effects, policy possibilities

    From revenue shortfalls to meeting increased demand for public services, the challenges facing government entities require atypical policies to deal with these issues in the COVID-19 era and beyond, according to new reports from the Government Finance Research Center at the University of Illinois Chicago.

  • Three Chicago area heat maps

    Maps show the need for racial equity In Chicago’s road to COVID-19 recovery

    The Mapping COVID-19 Recovery Project is the collaborative effort of 25 major Chicago foundations, nonprofit organizations, and public and private groups, including the Field Foundation of Illinois, the MacArthur Foundation, the city’s Office of Equity and Racial Justice and the University of Illinois at Chicago.

  • Junghwan Kim on campus

    COVID-19 mobility restrictions effective for short duration, study finds

    Attempts at restricting people’s mobility to control the spread of COVID-19 may be effective only for a short period, researchers said. A new study examines people’s mobility for seven months during the pandemic in the United States using publicly available, anonymized mobile phone data.

  • close up of covid test processing in lab

    Community colleges in Illinois now have option to provide free covidSHIELD tests to state residents

    Community colleges across the state now have the ability to provide the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign’s (UIUC) innovative, saliva-based COVID-19 test at no cost to any state resident who wants one. 

  • female student wearing Illini mask at desk in classroom

    K-12 Shield Playbook offers guidance for reopening schools

    A new resource is available to help guide teachers and school administrators as they reopen schools amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, assembled by researchers and experts at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. 

  • tampons

    Study launched to study vaccine relationship to menstrual cycle

    Kate Clancy from UIUC and a colleague are launching a study on the COVID vaccine and the relationship to the menstrual cycle after experiencing unusual side effects.

  • empty classroom desks

    Program innovates to help prisoners continue to learn during COVID

    UIUC's Education Justice Project was able to keep some of its prison courses going through paper correspondence and video instruction during the pandemic, when online learning was not an option.

  • scientist wearing PPE working in lab

    Research funding led to COVID breakthroughs

    Jay Walsh, U of I System interim VP of economic development and innovation, and Peter Schiffer, Frederick W. Beinecke professor of applied physics at Yale University, write about the value of America's government-university research partnership in an op-ed in The Hill.

  • headshots for Ujjal Kumar Mukherjee and Sridhar Seshadri

    Study: Rapid bulk-testing for COVID-19 key to reopening universities

    A new paper co-written by business professors Gies College of Business professors shows that rapid bulk-testing for COVID-19 along with other standard mitigation measures such as mask-wearing and social distancing were the keys to successfully reopening college campuses during the pandemic.

  • Researcher in SHIELD lab carrying samples

    Rivian donates $500,000 to support SHIELD Illinois testing

    The University of Illinois System received a $500,000 donation from Rivian to support the recently opened SHIELD Illinois COVID-19 testing lab at Illinois State University (ISU), which is located within five miles of the electric automaker’s factory in Normal.

  • Supercomputer in Urbana-Champaign

    U.S. Covid-19 supercomputing group evaluates year-long effort

    Members of the Covid-19 High-Performance Computing Consortium on Tuesday spoke on the progress of their initiative and advocated for a formal organization that would be in charge of making computing resources available in the event of future pandemics, hurricanes, oil spills, wildfires and other natural disasters.

  • COVID red spiky ball image

    Novel COVID-19 drug blocks viral replication

    Researchers at the University of Illinois Chicago have identified a potent new antiviral compound that can effectively block viral replication in human cells.

  • test tube samples in lab

    Saliva test being expanded in Champaign-Urbana community

    OSF HealthCare announced a new partnership with the University of Illinois Tuesday that will expand the U of I’s saliva-based COVID-19 test into the broader Champaign-Urbana community.

  • Masked student gives thumbs up as he receives the vaccine

    Vaccine study now open for student enrollment

    UIUC students may now enroll in a study to help understand the effectiveness of vaccines in reducing the spread of the coronavirus.

  • Anna Lopez works on laptop and mobile phone at desk

    Volunteers help Chicago residents without internet connect to COVID-19 vaccines

    A UIC computer science student created a volunteer group on Facebook aimed at helping individuals from Chicago's Black and brown communities book vaccine appointments online.

  • COVID-19 molecule red and white rendering

    UIS hosts webinar on COVID-19 & marginalized populations

    UIS and the Community Health Roundtable will host a free public webinar titled “Implications of COVID-19 for Historically Marginalized Populations and the Aging Population” at Noon Friday, March 16 via Zoom.

  • Lorraine Brown with arms in air and mask on celebrating vaccination

    UIC working to deliver vaccinations to city's most vulnerable

    The University of Illinois Chicago along with Protect Chicago Plus have partnered to provide 1,000 COVID-19 vaccines to residents in the Englewood neighborhood, with plans to expand to other city areas with vulnerable populations. 

  • six feet apart sign in dining hall with worker

    Killeen recognizes innovation and work that have kept campuses open

    University of Illinois System President Tim Killeen on Thursday recognized the thousands of staff, faculty and students whose efforts made the challenging 2020-21 academic year not only possible at the three system universities but a model of success.

  • Lincoln statue with UIS mask

    UIS hosts webinar on "Getting our Lives Back"

    The University of Illinois Springfield Innovation Hub and UIS Center for State Policy and Leadership will host a free public COVID-19 webinar titled “Getting our Lives Back: The Opportunities that Lie Ahead” at Noon Friday, March 12 via Zoom.

  • wastewater samples in test tubes in lab

    UIC tests Cook County Jail wastewater to catch early outbreaks

    On a recent morning, a UIC team, accompanied by doctors from the jail's Cermak Health Services and the Chicago Department of Health, showed NBC5 how they take samples from sewers at six different sites inside the jail complex.

  • Close up of test tubes in lab

    U of I System receives FDA authorization for covidSHIELD test process

    The University of Illinois System received emergency use authorization (EUA) today from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for covidSHIELD, its innovative saliva-based COVID-19 test that was used on the U of I campuses to hold the virus in check by utilizing widespread testing with rapid results. 

  • Angela Mitchell on computer in UI Health pharmacy

    Wearable sensors catch worsening COVID-19 symptoms early

    UI Health employees that have had COVID-19 are part of a clinical trial of a new remote monitoring system designed to catch worsening symptoms before it is too late.

  • woman giving COVID-vaccination to resident

    UIC vaccinating thousands at mass site, students pitch in

    An expansive stadium at the UIC campus is serving a new purpose during the pandemic: The Credit Union 1 Arena now operates as a mass COVID-19 vaccination site, offering about 1,000 coveted doses to eligible residents every day. (Chicago Tribune)

  • COVID visualization

    UIS hosts webinar on impact of COVID-19 on youth

    The UIS Innovation Hub, UIS Center for State Policy and Leadership and the Community Health Roundtable will host a free public webinar titled “Impact of COVID-19 on our Youth: Learning, Playing & Socializing” at Noon Friday, Feb. 19 via Zoom.

  • student administering vaccine

    UI Health leads Chicago in providing vaccines for phase 1B

    On the first day it opened a community COVID-19 vaccination site, UIC and UI Health administered more than 1,600 shots to phase 1A and phase 1B eligible people, representing nearly a quarter of all vaccine doses (23%) distributed in Chicago on that day.

  • inhaler & African American woman

    Cleaning product use affecting asthma more during pandemic

    Those with asthma are experiencing less asthma control related to an increase in using household disinfectants — known asthma triggers — because of COVID-19, according to a survey co-conducted by UIC researchers.

  • artist drawing of Shield logo

    Safer Community app has roots in U of I testing program

    William Sullivan, a professor of landscape architecture at UIUC, led the team that developed the Safer Illinois app. Since 1992, he said his focus at the university has been on how to create healthier cities. 

  • Maurice Shaw

    Pharmacies go on hiring sprees

    Maurice Shaw, pharmicist and instructor for the UIC College of Pharmacy, signed on to give out vaccines on weekends in addition to his full-time job, after receiving a flurry of pitches for help. (New York Times)

  • Jason Brooks administers COVID-19 vaccine

    UIC nursing students help with vaccine effort in Urbana

    UIC Nursing students in Urbana are gaining valuable clinical skills and providing a critical service to the community by helping local public health departments administer the COVID-19 vaccine.

  • UIUC student in COVID testing tent

    This is the safest place in Illinois

    How the U of I developed its own COVID-19 test and deployed it more than a million times (and counting).

  • double-faced peptide-based boosters

    Retrained generic antibodies can recognize SARS-CoV-2

    Researchers at UIC and California State University at Sacramento have developed a novel strategy to train the immunity response to COVID-19.

  • UIC Credit One Arena

    UI Health offering vaccines to people in Phase 1B

    UI Health is administering vaccinations to patients and some members of the public on the UIC campus by appointment.

  • Delores Albarracin

    Negative mental health effects of pandemic fade over time

    Social distancing policies correlated with immediate increases in interest in information about “isolation” and “worry” – but those effects tapered off two to four weeks after their respective peaks, says a new UIUC study.

  • U.S. Capitol

    Illinois public universities seek additional COVID-19 relief

    Presidents of the state's public universities sent a letter to Illinois federal legislators today seeking additional relief from increasing costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Vanessa Oddo

    Precarious employment on the rise long before COVID-19

    A study led by a University of Illinois Chicago researcher uses a new approach to measure precarious, or low-quality, employment in the United States. And, according to those findings, precarious employment has increased 9% between 1988 and 2016. 

  • Junghwan Kim

    Culture shapes willingness to share personal data to reduce COVID-19 spread

    Junghwan Kim, a graduate student in geography and geographic information science at UIUC, co-led a study of people’s attitudes toward sharing their geographic data with public health officials.   

  • M. Yanina Pepino with cup of coffee

    Online smell, taste challenge offered as early detection tool

    A brief smell and taste challenge, developed by the Global Consortium for Chemosensory Research, is a web-based tool people can use to easily monitor changes in these senses using their favorite morning beverage. 

  • Illinois Capitol

    Illinois tax revenue losses lower than expected during pandemic

    The pandemic hit state tax revenues hard last spring when a widely restrictive stay-at-home order was in effect, but much of that early loss was recovered in subsequent months, according to the report from the University of Illinois’ Institute of Government and Public Affairs.

  • Tim Liao

    COVID-19 cases, deaths in U.S. increase with higher income inequality

    U.S. counties with higher income inequality faced higher rates of COVID-19 infections and deaths in the first 200 days of the pandemic, according to a new study led by University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign's Tim Liao.

  • research team in the lab

    Fast, cheap COVID-19 antibody test developed

    Researchers in Urbana-Champaign have developed a simple, fast, cost-efficient COVID-19 testing system. The test demonstrates great potential for wide applications in diverse working environments.

  • Stephanie Crawford, Wayne Giles, Phoenix Matthews

    UIC experts part of vaccine work group

    Several UIC faculty are members of the Chicago Scientific COVID-19 Vaccine Work Group. This group, convened by the Chicago Department of Public Health, is tasked with independently evaluating whether or not the proper scientific and regulatory review has taken place for authorizing emergency use for COVID-19 vaccines.

  • Dummy head with mask in lab

    How masks affect speech acoustics

    Masks are an important tool for fighting COVID-19 but wearing one can make it difficult for others to hear us speak. Using a unique laboratory setup, UIUC researcher Ryan Corey tested how different types of masks affect the acoustics of speech.

  • Dr. Del Rios receiving vaccine

    First vaccine doses in Chicago

    Five front-line medical workers, including UI Health's Dr. Marina Del Rios, received the vaccine against COVID-19 in Chicago on Tuesday, December 15, marking an important milestone in the fight against the coronavirus.

  • UI Health & UIC logo

    UI Health now operating 4 COVID-19 testing & triage clinics

    UI Health teams have worked together to plan, develop, and launch four COVID-19 triage and testing sites at various locations to help manage the flow and influx of patients with COVID-19 symptoms and exposure.

  • Social work professor Liliane Windsor

    Adapting HIV/AIDS interventions

    A research project being co-led by a UIUC social work professor is exploring whether interventions that have been effective at engaging high-risk populations in HIV/AIDS testing and treatment can be adapted to achieve similar effects in mitigating COVID-19.

  • COVID-19 electrochemical sensing platform

    Paper-based detection sensor

    An Urbana-Champaign bioengineering graduate student has co-developed a rapid, ultrasensitive test using a paper-based electrochemical sensor that can detect the presence of the virus in less than five minutes.