September 16, 2020

State passes 27,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, and announces two additional deaths

On Wednesday, state health officials announced 119 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total number over 27,000 since the start of the pandemic, and two additional deaths related to the disease.

The state Department of Health announcement found double-digit numbers of new cases in seven counties, led by Lea County with 16, followed by Roosevelt County (15), Eddy County (14), Bernalillo County (14), Chaves County (10), San Juan County (10) and Santa Fe County (10).

DOH also reported another case among state Corrections Department inmates at the Central New Mexico Correctional Center in Valencia County.

The two newly reported deaths were both among southern New Mexico residents, a male in his 60s from Doña Ana County and a female in her 60s from Lea County with underlying conditions. Both were hospitalized.

DOH does not disclose which underlying condition any person had, because of privacy issues, only if one was present.

The state has now found 27,041 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 832 deaths related to the disease.

The number of those hospitalized for COVID-19 remained at 59 for the second-straight day. This could include those from other locations who are hospitalized in New Mexico, but would not include New Mexico residents who are hospitalized out of state.

The number of those designated as recovered reached 14,842, an increase of 208 over Tuesday’s announcement.

Gating criteria

The state continues to meet most of its goals, most of which are updated each Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Those dealing with contact tracing and healthcare system capacity are updated weekly, on Tuesdays, and the state hit those goals this week.

The one criteria that the state is below its goal is on tests per day, on a seven-day rolling average. The state hopes to have at least 5,000 tests per day, but dipped below this on September 6, bottoming out at 4,208 tests per day on Sept. 11. This number has been creeping back up, with 4,617 tests per day on a seven-day rolling average as of Sept. 14.

The state’s test positivity rate, or percentage of positive tests per total tests conducted, remains well below its goal of 5 percent or less on a seven-day rolling average, at 2.2 percent as of Sept. 14. 

Another key figure is the number of daily cases by the date of collection, on a seven-day rolling average. As of Sept. 10 this is at 90, nearly half of the gating target of 168 or less. The numbers differ from the number of when tests are reported, as it can take some labs more time to have results of their tests.

The state’s rate of spread, or how many people each person with COVID-19 will spread the disease to, continued to drop, down to 0.89, under the goal of 1.05 or lower. A rate spread of under 1 means that the number of cases are dropping.

The spread rate is under 1 in all five regions of the state. The highest is 0.99 in the northeastern part of the state, and the lowest is 0.81 in the northwestern part of the state.

Testing details

On its coronavirus information page, DOH reported 837,400 tests processed as of Wednesday, an increase of 5,405 tests over Tuesday’s number.

DOH also provided the number of newly reported cases by county, with correctional facilities that hold federal or state inmates separate from the counties in which they are located.

  • 14 new cases in Bernalillo County
  • 10 new cases in Chaves County
  • 2 new cases in Cibola County
  • 2 new cases in Curry County
  • 9 new cases in Doña Ana County
  • 14 new cases in Eddy County
  • 1 new case in Guadalupe County
  • 16 new cases in Lea County
  • 2 new cases in McKinley County
  • 3 new cases in Rio Arriba County
  • 15 new cases in Roosevelt County
  • 3 new cases in Sandoval County
  • 10 new cases in San Juan County
  • 10 new cases in Santa Fe County
  • 4 new cases in Socorro County
  • 3 new cases in Taos County
  • 1 new case among New Mexico Corrections Department inmates at the Central New Mexico Correctional Center in Valencia County

Additionally, DOH reported the total number of cases by county, including those from Wednesday.

One previously reported case in Cibola County was identified as an out-of-state resident and was removed from the total.

  • Bernalillo County: 6,107
  • Catron County: 11
  • Chaves County: 975
  • Cibola County: 404
  • Colfax County: 25
  • Curry County: 729
  • De Baca County: 1
  • Doña Ana County: 3,047
  • Eddy County: 645
  • Grant County: 99
  • Guadalupe County: 33
  • Harding County: 2
  • Hidalgo County: 98
  • Lea County: 1,284
  • Lincoln County: 178
  • Los Alamos County: 29
  • Luna County: 377
  • McKinley County: 4,280
  • Mora County: 7
  • Otero County: 241
  • Quay County: 69
  • Rio Arriba County: 378
  • Roosevelt County: 246
  • Sandoval County: 1,300
  • San Juan County: 3,243
  • San Miguel County: 91
  • Santa Fe County: 923
  • Sierra County: 39
  • Socorro County: 82
  • Taos County: 128
  • Torrance County: 64
  • Union County: 31
  • Valencia County: 533

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

  • Cibola County Correctional Center: 324
  • Otero County Prison Facility: 281
  • Otero County Processing Center: 163
  • Torrance County Detention Facility: 44

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: 32
  • Lea County Correctional Facility: 19
  • Northeast New Mexico Correctional Facility in Union County: 1
  • Northwest New Mexico Correctional Center in Cibola County: 1
  • Otero County Prison Facility: 473
  • Penitentiary of New Mexico in Santa Fe County: 1
  • Western New Mexico Correctional Facility in Cibola County: 4

There are 37 acute care or long-term care facilities with at least one staff or resident who tested positive for the disease within the last 28 days, according to DOH. That’s a decrease of one facility since Tuesday.