SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – New Mexico Department of Health Secretary Dr. Tracie Collins, Human Services Department Secretary Dr. David Scrase, and Public Education Secretary Ryan Stewart provided a COVID-19 webinar update on Wednesday, May 19 at 1 p.m.
Wednesday, NMDOH announced that 32 of New Mexico’s 33 counties are in the Turquoise Level with just one county in Green. As of May 19, there are no counties at the Yellow or Red Levels however, the department reports that counties can still backslide with enhancing risk on the next biweekly map update if vaccination thresholds are not met and key health metrics show the spread of the virus has worsened.
NMDOH announced on Friday that the state would be following the CDC’s updated guidelines regarding vaccinated individuals and masks. The state clarified that fully vaccinated people don’t have to wear masks in most settings unless directed by a healthcare professional to wear one.
However, masks are still required to be work by all individuals in health care settings such as hospitals, long-term care facilities, and doctors’ officers in addition to correctional facilities, homeless shelters, and public transportation. The New Mexico Department of Health Medical Advisory Team also approved the use of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children 12 and older.
The announcement came after the FDA approved the Pfizer vaccine for administration to 12 to 15-year-olds. Parents can register their children on the state’s vaccine website. As of Tuesday, there were 4,675 New Mexico kids ages 12 to 15 who have received their initial dose of the Pfizer vaccine.
NMDOH reported that there are 11,516 kids ages 12 to 15 in the state. So far, more than 21,000 kids have registered to receive the vaccine. Nationwide, 600,000 kids in this age group have received their first shot.