March 19, 2021

State expands COVID-19 vaccine to nearly all residents

The state of New Mexico announced on Friday that it would expand who is eligible to receive a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine to phases 1B and 1C, which includes virtually all New Mexicans ages 16 or older. 

The new eligibility includes frontline essential workers, residents of congregate care facilities, New Mexicans aged 60 and older and other essential workers.

Those who were eligible in previous phases will continue to be eligible, and the state says this means 1,620,000 New Mexicans out of the 1,680,605 New Mexicans 16 years of age or older.

“By expanding the pool of New Mexicans eligible for vaccine, we can keep the momentum going and ensure that New Mexico remains one of the nation’s vaccination leaders,” Department of Health Secretary Dr. Tracie Collins said in a statement. “At the same time, we will redouble our efforts to reach and vaccinate seniors and others in the early phases who have not yet received their shots.”

DOH said this was made possible because the state had provided at least one shot to 60 percent of those previously eligible. This includes about 73 percent of New Mexico residents aged 75 or older.

The state’s COVID-19 vaccine phase dashboard has more information on how many people in each phase and subphase have registered, been scheduled for an initial shot or received one shot or have been fully vaccinated (through either two shots of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines or one shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine).

Additionally, DOH announced that the state had provided one million doses of the vaccine to New Mexico residents so far.

“We’ve made extraordinary progress in a very short time – and we intend to keep going,” Collins said. “We look forward to offering vaccine to every New Mexican who wants it.”