March 12, 2020

UPDATE: NM DOH announces fifth and sixth positive COVID-19 tests

The New Mexico Department of Health announced its fifth and sixth presumptive possible cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, a day after it announced the first four possible presumptive cases. 

The fifth case, announced in the morning, is a woman in her 40s in Bernalillo County. DOH is investigating a possible travel link. Thursday afternoon, the department announced a Santa Fe County woman in her 50s with known recent international travel to Italy tested positive.

They are both at home in isolation.

As with the other presumptive positive cases, the state is sending the results to the federal Centers for Disease Control confirmation. Nationwide, according to the New York Times, there have been over 1,300 reported confirmed cases of COVID-19, also known as coronavirus, and 38 deaths in the United States. Nearly every state has reported at least one case.

The previous four cases in New Mexico all involved patients who recently traveled: A couple in their 60s in Socorro County who recently traveled to Egypt, a women in her 70s in Bernalillo County who recently traveled to the New York City area and a Santa Fe County woman in her 60s who recently traveled the the New York City area.

In an attempt to slow the spread of the virus, the state Department of Health announced a ban on events of more than 100 people. This includes cancellations or postponements of events at arenas, stadiums, auditoriums and theaters. Places with regular activity, like work, places of worship, restaurants and grocery and retail stores are exempt for that order. Public schools are also not closed. 

Update: Added information about a sixth presumptive positive case.