ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – New Mexicans who have registered for the COVID-19 vaccine may have received a text or email from the New Mexico Department of Health this weekend urging them not to go to a vaccination site without an appointment. Officials said despite the state having the most successful vaccine rollout in the country, vaccine demand still exceeds available supply. DOH is asking everyone to please wait for a notification if you have not received your vaccine.
Many people are ready to get their vaccine. “I think it would make it a lot easier for us to feel comfortable in an environment with people that are vaccinated,” New Mexico resident Mark Sanchez said.
Nearly 700,000 New Mexicans have registered online to get vaccinated, awaiting a notification that it is time to schedule their appointment. So far, 14.5% of New Mexicans have been fully vaccinated. “We are doing pretty good,” Sanchez said. “The numbers are going down.”
In some states like California, there are sites where dozens of people, sometimes more than a hundred, have lined up for a chance to get any leftover doses. “I am rolling the dice to see if they have a couple of extra vaccines that people didn’t show up for…We are what I call vaccine chasers,” a couple of people in line told Fox 5 in San Diego.
The New Mexico Department of Health is asking people not to do that here. Many across our state received a text or email Saturday that reads in part, “Please do not show up at a vaccine event without an appointment. Doing so creates additional health risks.”
KRQE News 13 asked DOH how often this is happening. A spokesperson said people have been showing up at events here and there, but it is discouraged as their system is able to fill no-show appointments very quickly. KRQE News 13 asked DOH how often the state is having to fill no-show appointments, but DOH said it’s not something they track.
This week, New Mexico is expecting another shipment of 88,000 doses from Pfizer and Moderna. As for Johnson & Johnson, we are not expecting another shipment until April as the company works on production.