The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

NM records first COVID-19 death

 

March 25, 2020



New Mexico health officials on Wednesday announced the state’s first death related to COVID-19.

A man in his late 70s died Sunday at Artesia General Hospital, according to a news release from Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.

According to the release:

"On March 22, he went to the hospital, where his condition deteriorated rapidly. He died the same day.

"A COVID-19 test was performed locally and sent to the state laboratory, which received the test Tuesday, March 24. The lab confirmed the positive test late the same day.

"The individual had multiple chronic underlying health issues."

The governor said the death "lays bare the very real, very life-or-death consequences of this disease."

New Mexico had reported 100 positive tests for the virus, as of Wednesday morning. A Curry County woman in her 50s has been quarantined at home after testing positive on Monday.

Also from the governor's news release:

“In light of this news, I want to further emphasize: As we test more people in the state, we will see the number of infections rise. And as we see the number of infections rise, we are likely to see more death. This is why it is absolutely imperative that New Mexicans remain home except for only those most essential or emergent outings. Social distancing and isolation is the best tool we have right now for mitigating the spread of this virus and avoiding capacity issues within our state’s health care system. All of us must undertake these steps in order to save more lives and prevent more deaths.”

New Mexico residents have been instructed to stay home except for outings essential to health, safety and welfare in order to minimize person-to-person contact. All non-essential businesses in the state have been ordered to cease in-person operations.

New Mexicans who are symptomatic – fever, shortness of breath, cough – for COVID-19 may call 855-600-3453 to learn about testing sites across the state. There is more information updated regularly on cv.nmhealth.org.

The state on Wednesday also released updated numbers on positive tests across the state.

A news release from the governor's office reads:

New Mexico has now had a total of 112 positive tests for COVID-19. A previously reported positive case in Chaves County was determined to be a clerical error; the patient has been informed, and the state count has been amended to reflect that fact:​

Bernalillo County: 48

Doña Ana County: 13

Cibola County: 1

Chaves County: 3

Curry County: 1

Eddy County: 1

Lea County: 1

McKinley County: 3

Rio Arriba County: 2

Sandoval County: 8

San Juan County: 8

San Miguel County: 1

Santa Fe County: 17

​​Socorro County: 2

Taos County: 3

Officials also said Wednesday there are nine people hospitalized in New Mexico for COVID-19. The number may include individuals who tested positive for COVID-19 out of state but are currently hospitalized in New Mexico. This number does not include New Mexicans who tested positive for COVID-19 and may have been transferred to a hospital out of state.

 
 

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