SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham announced Wednesday the state is preparing to reopen by the end of June. That’s if the state reaches its goal of 60% of New Mexicans being vaccinated. During Wednesday’s news conference, health officials also said they are making changes to the state’s Red-to-Turquoise framework.
“We are conquering COVID,” said Gov. Lujan Grisham “Everyone in this state should be incredibly proud.”
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Wednesday, Gov. Lujan Grisham said the state is on track to have 60% of eligible people vaccinated in nine weeks. If that happens, the state will open at the end of June. “I want us to fully embrace that New Mexico today is the first state, I believe in the nation, that can reach a percentage of the population fully vaccinated that allows us to be fully open in safest possible way and this amazing.”
Then starting, Friday, April 30, there will be a new color-coded map. According to a slide shown during the conference, most of the state will be in the Green or Turquoise Level. The map also shows that Bernalillo County will be in the Green-Level.
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Dr. Scrase says the county map will be updated once a week since the state is in maintenance mode and no longer in crisis mode.
Effective April 30, the health metrics that will be used to determine a county’s risk level will be:
- A new per-capita rate of new COVID-19 cases of no greater than 10 per 100,000 inhabitants over the most recent 14-day reporting period.
- An average positivity rate less than or equal to 7.5% over the most recent 14-day reporting period.
- A county with a fully vaccinated rate at or above a target, beginning at 35% as of April 30 and increasing to 40% for the regularly scheduled map update on May 5, that will increase 5% every other week as more vaccinations are completed.
According to the state, a county that meets none of the above gating criteria will be in Red Level. A county meeting one metric will be in Yellow Level. A county meeting two of the criteria will be in Green Level. A county that has met all three criteria or maintained Green-Level status for two consecutive map updates is in Turquoise-Level. Starting May 5, if a county maintains the Turquoise-Level, they will move to a four-week update.
“Our intention here is and has always been to ensure the color-coding of the map – and the associated requirements for each county – continue to match the actual risk level on the ground in each county,” said Human Services Secretary David Scrase. “As our models show test positivity is likely to become more elastic over time, and as fewer New Mexicans will require COVID-19 testing amid increasing vaccinations, we want to provide counties the assurance that they can continue to progress in accordance with the actual risk they face.”
Updates from news conference
2:06pm: Gov. Lujan Grisham says on June 30, people across the state will be able to go to a movie theater. She added that they will have to wear a mask.
1:53 pm: Question asked about what does this mean to reopen June 30th?
Gov. Lujan Grisham says that COVID safe practices will stay when the state reopens on June 30. This means continuing to wearing masks indoors and social distancing.
1:48 pm: Question asked about why should people get a second shot?
Gov. Lujan Grisham: “The opportunities as we do the modeling to determine what we can do safely. Having both those vaccines minimizes the availability for this virus to move around. Minimizing is conquering, conquering means we’re open.
1:44 pm: Question asked about herd immunity.
Dr. David Scrase: “No one knows what percent of population has to be vaccinated to truly reach heard immunity… probably New Mexico will be telling the rest of the country what that number is because we are going to get there first.”
1:35 pm: Dr. Collins also reminds New Mexicans the state does not share immigration status information with the federal government. She also reminded New Mexicans that the vaccine and vaccination sites are safe. So far, 900,000 New Mexicans have registered for the vaccine.
1:34 pm: Dr. Tracie Collins, New Mexico Department of Health Secretary, says New Mexico remains among the nation’s vaccine leaders. Currently, 57.5% of New Mexicans (16+) have received at least a first shot. She also added 41.6% of New Mexicans (16+) are fully vaccinated.
1:31pm: New criteria for the statewide framework will go into effect Friday, April 30. Nearly every county will be Green-Level or Turquoise-Level.
1:29pm: Dr. David Scrase says the state is adjusting its county framework.
1:20 pm: Red, Yellow, Green, Turquoise Changes:
1:13pm: Dr. David, secretary of New Mexico Services Department gave update on 7-day average.
1:12pm: Gov. Lujan Grisham says 60% of eligible New Mexicans are projected to be fully vaccinated by the end of June 2021. This means that New Mexico will be open in nine weeks.
1:10pm – As of today, 41.6% of New Mexican’s are fully vaccinated