Following the implementation of new metrics to measure county-level risk for COVID-19, 24 New Mexico counties can now operate at the turquoise—or least restrictive—level.

The new system relaxes the benchmarks for both case and test positivity rates. Under the previous system, counties were measured against a metric of eight or fewer cases per 100,000 population measured over a 14-day period, along with a test positivity rate of 5% or less. These will now increase to 10 cases and 7.5%, respectively.

The state also starts evaluating a new criteria today, vaccination rates, with a target of 35% full vaccination. That target increases to 40% on May 4, and then by 5% every two weeks when counties are re-evaluated. To qualify for the turquoise category, counties must meet all three criteria, but once they do, they will be re-evaluated every four weeks. To turn green now, counties must meet two of the three criteria. Counties only meeting one will be yellow and none will be red, as they were under the previous system. The allowable activities under each color category remain the same.

The county-level framework itself will stop being applied as soon as 60% of New Mexicans are fully vaccinated, according to Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and state health officials, who previewed the changes on Wednesday. In addition, the state modified the statewide gating criteria for COVID-19, increasing the case rate over a seven-day rolling average from 168 to 210 and the test positivity rate from 5% to 7.5% or less. Health officials expect the state’s test positivity rate to rise as vaccinations continue (vaccinated people are only recommended for tests if they have COVID symptoms), which will drive up the test positivity rate. The current statewide test positivity rate is 2.9%.

Under the new criteria, in addition to the 24 turquoise counties, six are at the green level and three are yellow. In comparison, prior to changing the criteria, 10 counties were in turquoise, three were green, 15 were yellow and one was red.

As for Santa Fe County, it remains turquoise, with an average daily case rate of 5.8 per 100,000; a test positivity rate of 1.67% and 46.2% of residents fully vaccinated.

New Mexico health officials today reported 309 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the statewide total so far to 197,733. Today’s new cases would appear to be the first time the state has topped 300 cases since March 5 (however, the state no longer reports daily cases over the weekends). The health department has designated 178,593 of those cases as recovered.

Bernalillo County drove today’s totals with 127 new cases—nearly double from yesterday—followed by San Juan County with 39 new cases and Doña Ana County with 28. Santa Fe County had 10 new cases.

The state also announced nine additional deaths; there have now been 4,067 fatalities.

As of today, 145 people are hospitalized with COVID-19—11 more than yesterday.*

Currently, 58% of New Mexicans have had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and 43.2% are fully vaccinated.

New cases

  • 127 new cases in Bernalillo County
  • 10 new cases in Chaves County
  • 1 new case in Colfax County
  • 3 new cases in Curry County
  • 4 new cases in De Baca County
  • 28 new cases in Doña Ana County
  • 7 new cases in Eddy County
  • 6 new cases in Grant County
  • 1 new case in Hidalgo County
  • 1 new case in Lea County
  • 4 new cases in Lincoln County
  • 1 new case in Luna County
  • 9 new cases in McKinley County
  • 10 new cases in Otero County
  • 4 new cases in Quay County
  • 5 new cases in Rio Arriba County
  • 2 new cases in Roosevelt County
  • 14 new cases in Sandoval County
  • 39 new cases in San Juan County
  • 1 new case in San Miguel County
  • 10 new cases in Santa Fe County
  • 2 new cases in Socorro County
  • 6 new cases in Torrance County
  • 14 new cases in Valencia County

New fatalities

  • A female in her 60s from Chaves County who was hospitalized
  • A male in his 60s from Cibola County who was a resident of the Laguna Rainbow Care Center in Casa Blanca
  • A female in her 60s from Doña Ana County who had underlying conditions
  • A female in her 50s from McKinley County who was hospitalized
  • A female in her 60s from McKinley County who had underlying conditions
  • A male in his 60s from McKinley County who was hospitalized and had underlying conditions
  • A female in her 80s from Roosevelt County
  • A male in his 70s from Sandoval County who was hospitalized
  • A male in his 70s from San Juan 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:

  • Albuquerque Heights Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center
  • Bear Canyon Rehabilitation Center in Albuquerque
  • Belen Meadows Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in Belen
  • Brookdale Santa Fe
  • Brookdale Valencia in Albuquerque
  • Canyon Transitional Rehabilitation Center in Albuquerque
  • Desert Peaks Assisting Living and Memory Care in Las Cruces
  • Genesis Healthcare Uptown in Albuquerque
  • Genesis Silver City Care Center in Silver City
  • Good Samaritan Society – Betty Dare in Alamogordo
  • Lakeview Christian Home in Carlsbad
  • The Meadows Home at the New Mexico Behavioral Health Institute in Las Vegas
  • New Mexico State Veterans Home in Truth or Consequences
  • Princeton Place in Albuquerque
  • Welbrook Senior Living in Las Cruces
  • White Sands Healthcare in Hobbs

Statewide cases

According to a health department news release, previously reported numbers included 20 cases that have been identified as duplicates (five in Doña Ana County, two in Grant County, three in McKinley County, four in Santa Fe County, two in Socorro County and four in Valencia County) and three cases that were not lab confirmed (one in McKinley County, one in Socorro County and one in Valencia County)—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: 56,899
  • Catron County: 92
  • Chaves County: 8,917
  • Cibola County: 2,861
  • Colfax County: 750
  • Curry County: 5,109
  • De Baca County: 146
  • Doña Ana County: 24,589
  • Eddy County: 6,801
  • Grant County: 1,696
  • Guadalupe County: 378
  • Harding County: 10
  • Hidalgo County: 361
  • Lea County: 8,272
  • Lincoln County: 1,662
  • Los Alamos County: 518
  • Luna County: 3,308
  • McKinley County: 12,231
  • Mora County: 170
  • Otero County: 3,791
  • Quay County: 452
  • Rio Arriba County: 3,583
  • Roosevelt County: 1,894
  • Sandoval County: 11,856
  • San Juan County: 14,514
  • San Miguel County: 1,342
  • Santa Fe County: 10,103
  • Sierra County: 746
  • Socorro County: 1,309
  • Taos County: 1,656
  • Torrance County: 720
  • Union County: 250
  • Valencia County: 6,632

Cases among people being held by federal agencies

  • Cibola County Correctional Center: 446
  • Otero County Federal Prison Facility: 444
  • Otero County Processing Center: 198
  • Torrance County Detention Facility: 47

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

  • Central New Mexico Correctional Facility in Valencia County: 298
  • Guadalupe County Correctional Facility: 251
  • Lea County Correctional Facility: 762
  • Northeast New Mexico Correctional Facility in Union County: 167
  • Northwest New Mexico Correctional Center in Cibola County: 127
  • Otero County Prison Facility: 473
  • Penitentiary of New Mexico in Santa Fe County: 218
  • Roswell Correctional Center: 229
  • Southern New Mexico Correctional Facility in Doña Ana County: 229
  • Springer Correctional Center in Colfax County: 151
  • Western New Mexico Correctional Facility in Cibola County: 75

*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.