New Mexico on track to fully reopen by end of June, but could happen sooner

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- Most counties in New Mexico entered the least restrictive level in the state’s Red to Green Framework for reopening.

Thirty of the state’s 33 counties are in Turquoise, and will stay in that category for at least four weeks.

The improvement was made possible last week when the state made changes to the gating criteria, adding vaccination rates.

The state will retire the color-coded system, and fully reopen after 60% of New Mexicans are fully vaccinated.

State health leaders said Wednesday that 58.9% of eligible New Mexicans have received their first COVID-19 vaccine. As of Wednesday, 45.4% of eligible New Mexicans are fully vaccinated.

The state is on target to reach the 60% goal by the end of June, but it’s possible New Mexico will get there sooner.

"If everyone gets vaccinated sooner, we’ll be done before the end of June," said Dr. David Scrase, cabinet secretary for the New Mexico Health and Human Services Apartment. "We would love that. We would love to be done at the end of May."

The Department of Health is working to find out how many New Mexicans may have been vaccinated in other states. The number, which is estimated to be less than 10%, could still have an impact on reopenings.

"We’ve worked with one partner in Texas and have requested that information regarding how many New Mexicans have received at least one dose in Texas, but have not received that response yet," said Dr. Tracie Collins, cabinet secretary for the New Mexico Department of Health.

Collins added that her department is planning to offer smaller vaccination clinics for businesses, nonprofits and other organizations.

A web-based request process will be available next week.

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