People line up for COVID-19 vaccine, boosters amid Omicron variant surge

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – New Mexicans lined up early to get their vaccine and booster shot at the Westside Community Center Tuesday.

Officials said more than 300 people registered. Dozens were already in line before the doors opened.

"It’s packed!” said Mia Madrid, who was in line to get a third dose of the Pfizer vaccine. “I feel like everyone wants to get their booster. My mom actually made me go by myself to get the booster."

The state is offering first doses of the vaccine to anyone 12 years or older, as well as secondary and booster doses for anyone older than 16. Officials say all they need to bring is a valid ID and their vaccine card, if they have been vaccinated before.

Shots are free and walk-ins are welcome, but officials say lines will move a lot faster if more people register ahead of time online. Those KOB 4 spoke with said it is worth the wait to get vaccinated.

"I think it’s important because we all need to stay safe," Madrid said. "I don’t want to wear the masks anymore."

"I think it’s been shown to keep at least symptoms down and also reduce transmissibility of the virus, so I think it’s something people should do to protect the other people around them as well as themselves," said Cameron Lamar, who was also in line to get a booster shot

The state said more than 550 shots would be available at Tuesday’s clinic in the South Valley. Officials on site told KOB 4, they would accommodate even more people if necessary. They also said they plan to host more clinics in the coming weeks.