Cases top 5,000 as local governments push home testing kits - Albuquerque Journal

Cases top 5,000 as local governments push home testing kits

Marica Romero, the assistant manager of the Westside Community Center, left, and manager Angelia Jaramillo hand out COVID-19 at-home testing kits at a drive-thru distribution event sponsored by the state Department of Health. Bernalillo County recently received 30,000 tests from the state that it will give to county residents. (Adolphe Pierre-Louis/Albuquerque Journal)

Copyright © 2022 Albuquerque Journal

COVID-19 cases in New Mexico remained high Thursday, with the state reporting 5,179 new cases and 34 additional deaths, pushing the statewide toll to 6,391 since the start of the pandemic.

New Mexico has been seeing high case counts the last two weeks amid a surge of the highly infectious omicron variant. The state set records on two consecutive days last week with more than 6,000 cases.

Of the cases reported Thursday, 1,296 were in Bernaillo County, the state’s most populous.

Dr. Denise Gonzales, the chief medical officer at Presbyterian Healthcare Services, said in an interview that while the omicron variant is more contagious than the delta and other previous variations of the virus, the new variant is not causing as severe disease. In the last four weeks, there have been 109,524 confirmed COVID cases and 208 deaths. Of the 208 people who died, 194 were unvaccinated, or 93.3%, according to Health Department epidemiology reports.

There were 713 people hospitalized with COVID on Thursday, up four from the day before.

Of the deaths reported Thursday, nine were residents of Bernalillo County. There were two men in their 30s with no preexisting conditions, one from Bernalillo County and the other from Lea County, included in the death toll.

In the last year, nearly 90% of those whose deaths were related to COVID were unvaccinated.

UNM Health will host a COVID-19 vaccination clinic for 5-11 year olds on Saturday at UNM Carrie Tingley Hospital, 1127 University NE, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., said Mark Rudi, a spokesman for the hospital. Primary shots will be given on Saturday and secondary doses will be given on Feb. 19.

As New Mexico continues to see a surge in cases, local governments are working to distribute in-home testing kits.

Bernalillo County on Wednesday started distributing 30,000 testing kits to local households. The county has set up several drive-thru sites where people can pick up testing kits for free.

The city of Albuquerque is giving away 80,000 free rapid COVID-19 test kits at select community centers, senior centers, health and social service centers, multigenerational centers, public libraries and through food pantries and community organizations.

The city – which received its supply from the state government – is currently prioritizing locations in “neighborhoods with the highest social vulnerability,” according to a news release. Households can get up to four free kits while supplies last.

More details, including a list of participating sites and their pickup times, is available online at www.cabq.gov/office-of-emergency-management/free-covid-19-self-test-kits-available.

Journal staff writer Jessica Dyer contributed to this report.

Home » ABQnews Seeker » Cases top 5,000 as local governments push home testing kits


Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

taboola desktop

1
Texas school shooting kills 18 children, 3 adults
ABQnews Seeker
An 18-year-old gunman opened fire Tuesday ... An 18-year-old gunman opened fire Tuesday at a Texas elementary school, killing at least 18 children, officials said, and the gunman was dead. The ...
2
Businesses confused on cannabis taxes
ABQnews Seeker
Dispensaries across New Mexico may owe ... Dispensaries across New Mexico may owe money to the state depending on how they have taxed their adu ...
3
NM receives money in multi-state settlement with Ford Motor ...
ABQnews Seeker
New Mexico is set to receive ... New Mexico is set to receive $250,000 from a multi-state settlement with Ford Motor Co. over claims ...
4
APD investigates possible homicide, IDs recent victims
ABQnews Seeker
Police are investigating a possible homicide ... Police are investigating a possible homicide Tuesday afternoon on West Central and they identified three people recently killed in separate incidents across Albuquerque. Lt. ...
5
Feds: Ohio man plotted trip to Texas to kill ...
ABQnews Seeker
An Iraqi man who came to ... An Iraqi man who came to the United States two years ago and applied for asylum hatched a plot to assassinate former President George ...
6
Top Southern Baptists plan to release secret list of ...
ABQnews Seeker
Top administrative leaders for the Southern ... Top administrative leaders for the Southern Baptist Convention, the largest Protestant denomination in America, said Tuesday that they will release a secret list of ...
7
Taos, Meow Wolf, Carlsbad Caverns make list of 'best ...
ABQnews Seeker
Three New Mexico destinations are being ... Three New Mexico destinations are being billed as one of the '150 best things to do around the USA' by Travel Lemming. The team ...
8
TV debate Wednesday for AG candidates Torrez and Colón
2022 election
The two candidates in the hotly ... The two candidates in the hotly contested race for the Democratic nomination for state Attorney General are set to appear at a televised debate ...
9
County assessor candidates have experience with office
2022 election
Stephen A. Sais and Damian R. ... Stephen A. Sais and Damian R. Lara are vying to fill the seat being vacated by Tanya Giddings, who cannot run again because of ...