In the last two weeks the Illinois Department of Public Health reports that the city of Hickory Hills has had 36 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, bringing our cumulative total to 1,456 cases with 26 related deaths. The Delta variant continues to spread throughout the state and our region. Public health data that indicates that only 42% of our eligible residents are fully vaccinated. By way of comparison, the statistics for the fully vaccinated among neighboring suburbs is as follows: Justice 36%; Bridgeview 41%; Oak Lawn 51%; Palos Hills 44%; Palos Heights 66% and Palos Park 90%.
As you may have heard, Cook County now is back to a mandatory indoor mask mandate. Even if you are frustrated with the mask mandate, please be respectful of businesses who must follow the public health guidance and also consider the many people who may be immunocompromised. You also may wish to consider our region’s low vaccination rate that indicates that only about 40% of the people you encounter in public spaces may be vaccinated. This number is probably less given that many children are not eligible to be vaccinated.
Yesterday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the first COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine has been known as the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, and will now be marketed as Comirnaty (koe-mir’-na-tee), for the prevention of COVID-19 disease in individuals 16 years of age and older. The vaccine also continues to be available under emergency use authorization (EUA), including for individuals 12 through 15 years of age and for the administration of a third dose in certain immunocompromised individuals.
“The FDA’s approval of this vaccine is a milestone as we continue to battle the COVID-19 pandemic. While this and other vaccines have met the FDA’s rigorous, scientific standards for emergency use authorization, as the first FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine, the public can be very confident that this vaccine meets the high standards for safety, effectiveness, and manufacturing quality the FDA requires of an approved product,” said Acting FDA Commissioner Janet Woodcock, M.D. “While millions of people have already safely received COVID-19 vaccines, we recognize that for some, the FDA approval of a vaccine may now instill additional confidence to get vaccinated.
I have and continue to be an unabashed supporter of science and the vaccine. My entire family is vaccinated and we will get the booster shot as soon as we are eligible and the shot is available. Reputable scientists and medical experts agree that the vaccine has been thoroughly tested and is incredibly effective at preventing and protecting us from COVID-19. Now that the FDA has fully approved the vaccine, I would encourage the unvaccinated to reconsider getting vaccinated for your own health but also for the well-being of our community at large. Below is information about vaccine safety from the Centers for Disease Control.
Hickory Hills Nutrition
Hickory Hills Nutrition located 8075 w 95th St. held its grand opening on Saturday, August 21. Cortez Hicks and his wife JoJo did a wonderful job designing the interior space and they make delicious and healthy protein shakes, refreshing energy teas, iced coffee and more. Hickory Hills Nutrition is located in the Jewel Shopping Center, next to Stella’s and Hair Performers. A copy of the menu is below.
Hickory’s Max Strus Signs Two Year NBA Deal with the Miami Heat
Max Strus, raised in Hickory Hills and product of Stagg High School and DePaul University, recently signed a two year contract with the NBA Miami Heat. Below is a photo and game video of Max in action during the 2021 NBA summer league. Max played regularly for the Miami Heat last year and recently was rewarded with a multi-year deal. The picture below is of Max hitting the game winning jump shot in double overtime against the Memphis Grizzlies. That game Max scored 32 points, including the game winner. Max’s journey to the NBA is an amazing story of perseverance, dedication, hard work and talent. Congratulations to Max and the entire Strus family. Cannot wait for the NBA season to start!
Please stay safe