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COVID boosters approved for older teens

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COVID-19 vaccine booster shots are now available for 16 and 17 year olds in New Mexico, according the the New Mexico Department of Health.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention gave their approval for the booster shots Thursday. That was followed by a review by the New Mexico Medical Advisory Team on Thursday, according to a press release Friday from NMDOH.

Parents and guardians can schedule 16 and 17 year olds for a booster shot at least six months after they have received their second dose of the primary series of the Pfizer vaccine. The Pfizer vaccine is the only one at this time that has received emergency use authorization for those under 18.

Appointments for boosters or for the initial series can be made by contacting a family health care provider, through the state’s vaccine website, vaccineNM.org, or through the CDC’s website, vaccines.gov, according to the press release.

In Friday’s daily case update, NMDOH reported 1,468 new cases in 31 counties and three correctional facilities. The rolling seven-day average of test positivity in the state decreased this week from 13.9% on Monday to 11.5% on Friday.

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The daily update included 54 new cases in Chaves County. In the southeast region of the state, Roosevelt County reported 79 cases, Eddy County had 51, Curry County had 50, Lea County had 28, Quay County had 25, Lincoln County had 14 and De Baca County had seven.

Across the state, Bernalillo County had 366 cases, Doña Ana County had 190, Santa Fe County had 84, Otero County had 79, Valencia County had 76 and Sandoval had 67.

The total number of cases in New Mexico since March 2020 is 329,778, including 14,425 in Chaves County.

A Chaves County man was among the 13 deaths related to COVID-19 reported Friday. He had been hospitalized and had underlying health conditions. His is the county’s 223rd death related to the virus.

Among the other deaths, five of the deceased were from Bernalillo County and two were from Santa Fe County. Doña Ana, Luna, Otero, San Juan and Valencia counties each reported one death.

The total number of deaths in New Mexico is now 5,472.

As of Friday, 691 people were hospitalized in New Mexico for COVID-19.

City/RISD reporter Juno Ogle can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or reporter04@rdrnews.com.

To keep up with local coverage of the coronavirus, go to rdrnews.com/category/news/covid-19-situation/.

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