NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The rate at which New Mexicans are getting the COVID-19 vaccine is slowing down, but the state maintains it is still on track to reach its goal of 60% of people 16 and over being fully vaccinated by July 1.
“People are concerned about the side effects, long term or short term. There maybe wasn’t as much testing as people would’ve liked,” Matheus Rodrigues of Albuquerque said.
New Mexico administered nearly 30,000 first and second doses over the past week. That’s less than a third of the nearly 94,000 over a week back in mid-April. That’s a dip that mirrors the national trend.
According to the state’s vaccine dashboard, almost 160,000 people who got their first shot still need to get their second. If all those people get their booster, the state will have a 66.6% vaccine rate by early July.
Only about 47,000 of them need to get their second dose for New Mexico to reach that 60% mark. It’s unclear just how long that could take because the state couldn’t provide KRQE News 13 with the daily rate for second doses. People are getting antsy about reaching that goal.
“It’s a little bit concerning. It might just be because we’ve reached the point where it’s people that want to get vaccinated now or whether it’s just more of a logistical issue that the rural areas are harder to get vaccinated,” Zora Lehmer-Mearns of Albuquerque said.
The state is trying different ways to try to get more people vaccinated, from mobile clinics to the new $10 million vaccination lottery.
At last check, more than 372,000 New Mexicans have entered that Vax 2 the Max sweepstakes. Since that lottery was announced on June 1, the seven-day average of new vaccine registrations has seen a slight uptick of 85 more a day. In a news release, a spokesperson said that increase suggests “the launch of the sweepstakes may have contributed to a general flattening of, or even slight improvement upon, a recent downward trend in new registrations.”