COVID-19 related deaths reach 600; cases grow statewide including growth in southern, eastern counties

Andy Lyman

New Mexico health officials announced another 317 cases of COVID-19, the fourth straight day and the sixth day in the last two weeks with over 300 newly reported cases in a single day. Previously, the state Department of Health had only reported 300 or more cases once.

The state also announced five additional deaths related to COVID-19, bringing the total to 601. The state crossed the mark of 500 deaths related to COVID-19 on July 1.

There are now 18,475 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 in New Mexico.

Additionally, the state Department of Health crossed a major testing threshold, with over 500,000 tests conducted since the start of the pandemic. The state of New Mexico remains in the top-five among states when it comes to tests per capita. 

But the high number of cases is not solely because of the state’s high test rate. Of the 8,196 tests reported on Friday, 3.87 percent were positive. The seven-day average of positive tests was below three percent as recently as early July, but reached as high as 4.4 percent in mid-July.

The highest number of newly reported cases came again in Bernalillo County, with 96, but the uptick in cases continued in southern and eastern New Mexico, with new highs in Chaves County, Lincoln County and Otero County and another increase of double-digits in Lea County.

In a press conference this week, Human Services Department Secretary Dr. David Scrase mentioned the increased number of cases in the southern area of the state.

The state also announced the first confirmed case among state inmates at the Western New Mexico Correctional Facility, a privately run detention center in Cibola County, and the Northeastern New Mexico Correctional Facility, a privately run detention center in Union County.

The state also provided some details on the five deaths related to COVID-19.

  • A female in her 90s from Bernalillo County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions. The individual was a resident at The Rio at Las Estancias facility in Albuquerque.
  • A female in her 70s from Bernalillo County who was a resident of Spanish Trails Rehabilitation Suites facility in Albuquerque and had underlying conditions.
  • A male in his 60s from Curry County who was hospitalized.
  • A male in his 60s from Doña Ana County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions.
  • A male in his 30s from San Juan County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions.

DOH did not provide which underlying condition each individual had, only if one was present.

The number of those hospitalized in New Mexico for COVID-19 dropped to 161 from 167 on Thursday. This could include those from out-of-state who are hospitalized for COVID-19, but would not include New Mexicans who are hospitalized out-of-state.

The number of those deemed recovered from COVID-19 reached 7,156, an increase of 100 over Thursday’s announcement.

Testing details 

The state’s coronavirus information page says the state has processed 505,177 tests as of Friday, an increase of 8,192 over Thursday’s announcement. This is the sixth day that the state announced over 8,000 tests, including the fourth time in the last seven days.

The cases in New Mexico included 18 cases in Chaves County, the highest number in a single day, one more than the previous record of 17 on July 13. In Lincoln County, DOH reported 17 new cases on Friday, the first time with more than five cases in a single day in the county. The 17 cases represent more than a quarter of all cases reported so far in the county.

And Lea County continues to show growth. Of the county’s 479 cases, 28.4 percent, or 136, came in the last seven days.

Here are the total cases reported on Friday by DOH:

  • 96 new cases in Bernalillo County
  • 18 new cases in Chaves County
  • 4 new cases in Cibola County
  • 10 new cases in Curry County
  • 42 new cases in Doña Ana County
  • 7 new cases in Eddy County
  • 1 new case in Grant County
  • 1 new case in Hidalgo County
  • 15 new cases in Lea County
  • 17 new cases in Lincoln County
  • 8 new cases in Luna County
  • 24 new cases in McKinley County
  • 11 new cases in Otero County
  • 6 new cases in Rio Arriba County
  • 3 new cases in Roosevelt County
  • 11 new cases in Sandoval County
  • 12 new cases in San Juan County
  • 1 new case in San Miguel County
  • 12 new cases in Santa Fe County
  • 1 new cases in Taos County
  • 4 new cases in Union County
  • 10 new cases in Valencia County
  • 1 new case among New Mexico Corrections Department inmates at the Northeast New Mexico Correctional Facility
  • 1 new case among New Mexico Corrections Department inmates at the Otero County Prison Facility
  • 1 new case among New Mexico Corrections Department inmates at the Western New Mexico Correctional Facility

Additionally, the state provided the total number of cases by county, including Friday’s reports.

DOH said four cases (one in each of Chaves, Lea, Otero and San Juan counties) were identified as out-of-state residents and one case in Lea County was not lab-confirmed, and so removed from the totals.

  • Bernalillo County: 4,227
  • Catron County: 4
  • Chaves County: 252
  • Cibola County: 287
  • Colfax County: 11
  • Curry County: 345
  • Doña Ana County: 1,906
  • Eddy County: 213
  • Grant County: 64
  • Guadalupe County: 27
  • Harding County: 1
  • Hidalgo County: 85
  • Lea County: 479
  • Lincoln County: 64
  • Los Alamos County: 16
  • Luna County: 183
  • McKinley County: 3,868
  • Mora County: 6
  • Otero County: 137
  • Quay County: 28
  • Rio Arriba County: 267
  • Roosevelt County: 104
  • Sandoval County: 983
  • San Juan County: 2,901
  • San Miguel County: 36
  • Santa Fe County: 474
  • Sierra County: 22
  • Socorro County: 68
  • Taos County: 82
  • Torrance County: 52
  • Union County: 21
  • Valencia County: 295

DOH reported the following numbers of COVID-19 cases among individuals held by federal agencies at the following facilities:

  • Cibola County Correctional Center: 2
  • Otero County Prison Facility: 276
  • Otero County Processing Center: 149
  • Torrance County Detention Facility: 43

DOH reported the following numbers of COVID-19 cases among individuals held by the New Mexico Corrections Department at the following facilities:

  • Central New Mexico Correctional Facility in Valencia County: 24
  • Lea County Correctional Facility: 2
  • Northeast New Mexico Correctional Facility: 1
  • Northwest New Mexico Correctional Center in Cibola County: 1
  • Otero County Prison Facility: 467
  • Penitentiary of New Mexico in Santa Fe County: 1
  • Western New Mexico Correctional Facility: 1