COVID-19 case counts are up this week, and last week's rapid responses doubled from the week before. While New Mexico is meeting most of its gating criteria for the pandemic, the rising incidents are "poor indicators about where we're headed," Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said today during her weekly COVID-19 update. "I want every New Mexican to see this: We have to do better. What happens if we don't? More people die, more people get sick…"

The governor also emphasized that while New Mexico is technically surpassing its goal of testing 5,000 people per day, her goal is 7,000 (hence why that criteria is in red versus green in the below graphic).

Health officials today reported 239 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the statewide total so far to 28,224.

Bernalillo County led with new cases: 58 of them, followed by Doña Ana County with 29 and Eddy County with 23. Santa Fe County had 10 new cases.

The state also announced two additional deaths from Bernalillo and Cibola counties; there have now been 859 fatalities.

As of today, 66 people are hospitalized, 16 of them on ventilators.* Detailed information is available at the end of this story.

The governor also reported on the most recent roundup of rapid responses, which occur when a business or public sector employee tests positive.  For the week of Sept. 7-13, the state recorded 128 rapid responses. For the week following, there were 223.

"These are indicators we are headed in the wrong direction," Lujan Grisham said, "…and we have the power ourselves to change that trajectory."

With some students, staff and teachers returning partially to in-person learning, the state also has been tracking cases related to schools. Since Sept. 7, officials have reported 71 COVID-19 cases, split almost evenly between staff and students. However, 55% of those cases were among either students or staff doing remote rather than in-person learning. That was good news, the governor said, but also means "that you have folks if they were in the classroom would have likely exposed others in the classroom. It's exactly what we are concerned about, and it's what we must do better at."

In addition to discussing COVID-19, Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver reviewed various deadlines and information related to the upcoming Nov. 3 general election, for which absentee voting begins Oct. 6 and early voting takes place Oct. 17-31. For people who have already requested absentee ballots, she noted that clerks will begin mailing those out on Oct. 6.

Although no specific mention was made to ongoing and recent comments by President Donald Trump critical of mail-in ballots and the electoral process, Toulouse Oliver did stress the reliability of New Mexico's election process.

"New Mexicans should be confidant in their election results and democratic process," Toulouse Oliver said. "Please do not believe everything you see on social media."

She also reminded people that any election results on election night are unofficial and described the certification process, noting that election workers are mandated to stop counting ballots at 11 pm on election night.

"This is really important because it's being implemented to prevent the fatigue of election workers," she said. "Fatigue leads to errors and mistakes, which leads to inaccuracies. The most important thing is to give voters of this state accurate election results."

New cases

  • 58 new cases in Bernalillo County
  • 16 new cases in Chaves County
  • 5 new cases in Cibola County
  • 11 new cases in Curry County
  • 29 new cases in Doña Ana County
  • 23 new cases in Eddy County
  • 7 new cases in Grant County
  • 16 new cases in Lea County
  • 3 new cases in Lincoln County
  • 5 new case in Luna County
  • 3 new cases in McKinley County
  • 4 new cases in Otero County
  • 5 new cases in Rio Arriba County
  • 5 new cases in Roosevelt County
  • 15 new cases in San Juan County
  • 1 new case in San Miguel County
  • 8 new cases in Sandoval County
  • 10 new cases in Santa Fe County
  • 4 new cases in Socorro County
  • 5 new cases in Taos County
  • 5 new cases in Valencia County
  • 1 new case among individuals held by federal agencies at Otero County Prison Facility

New fatalities

  • A female in her 80s from Bernalillo County who was a resident of the Princeton Place facility in Albuquerque
  • A female in her 90s from Cibola County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions

Congregate facilities

The Department of Health has identified at least one positive COVID-19 case in residents and/or staff in the past 28 days at the following facilities:

  • Aristocrat Assisted Living in Las Cruces
  • Avamere at Rio Rancho
  • Avamere at Roswell
  • Bear Canyon Rehabilitation Center in Albuquerque
  • Belen Meadows Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in Belen
  • Brookdale Santa Fe
  • Camino Healthcare in Albuquerque
  • Casa de Oro Center in Las Cruces
  • Casa Maria Health Care Center in Roswell
  • Fort Bayard Medical Center in Santa Clara
  • Good Life Senior Living in Lovington
  • Good Samaritan Society Las Cruces
  • Heartfelt Manor in Roswell
  • Lakeview Christian Home in Carlsbad
  • Las Palomas Center in Albuquerque
  • Lovington Healthcare in Lovington
  • Princeton Place in Albuquerque
  • Raton Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Raton
  • The Rehab Center of Albuquerque in Albuquerque
  • Red Rocks Care Center in Gallup
  • Retirement Ranches in Clovis
  • Silver City Care Center in Silver City
  • Sunny Day Assisted Living in Gallup
  • Sunset Villa Nursing Home in Roswell
  • Village Retirement Community in Roswell
  • The Watermark at Cherry Hills in Albuquerque
  • Welbrook Senior Living Las Cruces

Statewide cases

According to a state news release, previously reported numbers included one case in Rio Arriba County that has been identified as duplicate and one case in Curry County that has been identified as an out-of-state resident—these have now been corrected. County totals are subject to change upon further investigation and determination of residency of individuals positive for COVID-19.

  • Bernalillo County: 6,327
  • Catron County: 9
  • Chaves County: 1,082
  • Cibola County: 415
  • Colfax County: 29
  • Curry County: 769
  • De Baca County: 1
  • Doña Ana County: 3,227
  • Eddy County: 758
  • Grant County: 119
  • Guadalupe County: 34
  • Harding County: 2
  • Hidalgo County: 99
  • Lea County: 1,365
  • Lincoln County: 199
  • Los Alamos County: 32
  • Luna County: 416
  • McKinley County: 4,311
  • Mora County: 7
  • Otero County: 254
  • Quay County: 74
  • Rio Arriba County: 390
  • Roosevelt County: 280
  • Sandoval County: 1,329
  • San Juan County: 3,295
  • San Miguel County: 105
  • Santa Fe County: 970
  • Sierra County: 44
  • Socorro County: 101
  • Taos County: 138
  • Torrance County: 66
  • Union County: 31
  • Valencia County: 572

Cases among people being held by federal agencies

  • Cibola County Correctional Center: 324
  • Otero County Prison Facility: 282
  • Otero County Processing Center: 163
  • Torrance County Detention Facility: 44

Cases among people being held by the New Mexico Department of Corrections

  • Central New Mexico Correctional Facility in Valencia County: 33
  • Lea County Correctional Facility: 48
  • Northeast New Mexico Correctional Facility in Union County: 1
  • Northwest New Mexico Correctional Center in Cibola County: 1
  • Otero County Prison Facility: 472
  • Penitentiary of New Mexico in Santa Fe County: 1
  • Southern New Mexico Correctional Facility in Doña Ana County: 1
  • Western New Mexico Correctional Facility in Cibola County: 4

*Per the health department, hospitalization figures include people who were tested elsewhere but are hospitalized in New Mexico, but don't include people who were tested here but are hospitalized out of state.