April 17, 2020

Total NM COVID-19 deaths crosses 50, total confirmed cases over 1,700

A microbiologist in Pennsylvania conducted a test for COVID-19 in March, 2020. Flickr/cc

The state Department of Health announced seven additional COVID-19 related deaths and 115 additional positive tests on Friday.

The seven additional deaths bring the state’s total to 51, while the additional positive cases bring the state’s total to 1,711.

The new deaths were made up of four in Bernalillo County and one each in Sandoval, San Juan and Socorro counties.

Two of the Bernalillo County cases, a male in his 70s and a female in her 90s, were residents of La Vida Llena, a senior living facility that has seen an outbreak of cases and deaths. Both had underlying medical conditions according to the state.

The state also provided some information on the other reported COVID-19-related deaths:

  • A female in her 80s from Bernalillo County. The individual was hospitalized and had underlying medical conditions.
  • A second female in her 80s from Bernalillo County. The individual had underlying medical conditions.
  • A female in her 50s from Sandoval County. 
  • A male in his 80s from San Juan County. The individual was hospitalized.
  • A male in his 40s from Socorro County. The individual was hospitalized and had underlying medical conditions.

La Vida Llena is one of nine congregate living facilities with positive COVID-19 cases among staff and/or residents. Older people and those with underlying medical conditions are at higher risk of hospitalization or death from COVID-19 infections.

Of the state’s 51 deaths, 32 have come in the last seven days.

The state announced that 96 people are currently hospitalized with COVID-19 in the state. That could include those who tested positive in other states and are hospitalized in New Mexico, but not those who tested positive in New Mexico and are hospitalized in other states. Thursday’s announcement said 90 people were hospitalized in the state.

The DOH said 382 of those who have tested positive are now deemed recovered, an increase of 29 over Thursday’s announcement.

Cases by county

The 115 new cases came in 12 of the state’s 33 counties. The most, 51, came in McKinley County, which has the highest number of confirmed COVID-19 cases per capita of any county in the state. Only Bernalillo County, the most-populous county in the state, has more total cases.

State officials have warned that a “surge” in cases would hit the northwestern area of the state first. The state has sent additional resources to the area to help with the response.

The state provided the numbers breaking down the new cases by county.

  • 24 new cases in Bernalillo County
  • 2 new cases in Chaves County
  • 2 new cases in Cibola County
  • 1 new case in Colfax County
  • 7 new cases in Doña Ana County
  • 2 new cases in Eddy County
  • 1 new case in Grant County
  • 51 new cases in McKinley County
  • 8 new cases in Sandoval County
  • 14 new cases in San Juan County
  • 1 new case in Santa Fe County
  • 2 new cases in Valencia County

The state also provided the total number of cases by county including Friday’s announced numbers; the state says the case numbers include a previously announced case that had not yet been confirmed.

  • Bernalillo County: 514
  • Catron County: 1
  • Chaves County: 21
  • Cibola County: 32
  • Colfax County: 4
  • Curry County: 10
  • Doña Ana County: 65
  • Eddy County: 9
  • Grant County: 13
  • Lea County: 2
  • Lincoln County: 1
  • Los Alamos County: 6
  • Luna County: 3
  • McKinley County: 316
  • Otero County: 3
  • Quay County: 1
  • Rio Arriba County: 10
  • Roosevelt County: 1
  • Sandoval County: 301
  • San Juan County: 243
  • San Miguel County: 2
  • Santa Fe County: 80
  • Socorro County: 20
  • Taos County: 15
  • Torrance County: 12
  • Valencia County: 26

Friday, the state also added zip-code-level data for confirmed cases to its COVID-19 database.

According to the state’s numbers on its COVID-19 website, a total of 35,613 tests have been processed in the state, an increase of 1,125 over the previous day.

In an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19, the state banned gatherings of more than five people. It also closed restaurants to in-person dining and suspended operations of all in-person workplaces not deemed essential through April 30. The state also closed public schools through the end of the academic year. The DOH has active investigations into the positive patients, which includes contact-tracing and swabs of symptomatic individuals who have had contact with the positive cases.

The state recommended, but did not require, that people wear masks when they leave the house, but said medical-grade masks should be saved for first responders and medical personnel.

The state advises individuals who are experiencing symptoms of a COVID-19 infection—fever, cough, or shortness of breath—to call their health care provider or the NMDOH COVID-19 hotline immediately (1-855-600-3453). 

The state says those who can seek COVID-19 tests are not only those who have symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, coughing and shortness of breath), but asymptomatic individuals who are close contacts or household members of people who already tested positive, residents of nursing homes or in congregant settings, including homeless shelters, group homes and detention centers.

Those with non-health-related questions or concerns can also call 833-551-0518 or visit newmexico.gov.