Health

New state law banned a county’s gas stations from selling liquor. So some stopped selling gas.

BY: - September 16, 2021

A one-paragraph amendment to the state Legislature’s new, sweeping alcohol reform law gave owners of gas stations in McKinley County a choice: You can sell hard liquor. Or you can sell gas.  To Benjamin Gonzales, manager of the El Sabino’s grocery and gas station in Vanderwagen, N.M., it was a “no-brainer.” “We stopped selling gas […]

Huge dip in school COVID cases draws cautious optimism

BY: - September 16, 2021

It might be a bright spot for New Mexico public schools fighting COVID-19. It might be an anomaly.  Either way, Public Education Secretary-designate Kurt Steinhaus is cautiously optimistic at the 37% dip in on-campus infections.  “When I looked at that, the first time I thought, hmm, we better double check the data and make sure […]

N.M. extends indoor mask mandate to Oct. 15

BY: - September 15, 2021

Keep your mask up, New Mexico. Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s office announced New Mexico will extend the state’s indoor mask mandate until Oct. 15.  The requirement was reinstated in August as COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations rose in the state. Another public health order requiring health care workers and public schools employees to be vaccinated or […]

State needs to legalize testing strips to prevent overdose deaths, harm reduction expert says

BY: - September 10, 2021

Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid that is much more potent than heroin, has entered New Mexico’s drug market and can make drug use more dangerous and even fatal. Fentanyl is killing more people in the state than heroin and prescription opioids now, according to health officials.  Overdose deaths have increased in the state, with fentanyl-related deaths […]

Providers ask lawmakers to relax the rules around take-home drug treatment

BY: - September 10, 2021

It took Phil Fiuty more than 20 years from the first time he thought maybe he wanted to not use drugs anymore to become sober. That’s not because of any moral failing or lack of character on his part, but illustrates his view that it can take a lot of practice to be abstinent. “It’s […]

COVID-19 vaccines or weekly tests to be mandated for millions of U.S. workers

BY: - September 9, 2021

WASHINGTON — More than 80 million employees of private businesses in the U.S. will be required to get vaccinated against COVID-19 or undergo weekly testing as part of the Biden administration’s latest strategy for combating the still-surging coronavirus pandemic. The upcoming vaccine rule for companies with at least 100 employees is one plank of an […]

Behavioral health provider: ‘I just hope that we’ve learned from history’

BY: - September 8, 2021

Providers are asking New Mexico lawmakers to rebuild the state’s behavioral health care system, which is still plagued by problems after former Gov. Susana Martinez caused many providers to shut down about eight years ago.   Lawrence Medina, executive director of the Rio Grande Alcoholism Treatment Program in Taos, N.M., suggested lawmakers provide funding needed to […]

N.M. vaccine rollout hits the road with mobile clinics at schools

BY: - September 7, 2021

New Mexico continues to take its COVID-19 vaccine efforts to young people.  The state’s Department of Health and Public Education Department are hosting several vaccination events this week at campuses in Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Española, Tucumcari and Mora.  Anyone can get a jab at the mobile vaccination school events, though the focus on getting students […]

N.M. abortion funds overwhelmed by patients from Texas

BY: - September 7, 2021

Abortion rights and health care access advocates in New Mexico described a sense of heaviness as they took an influx of calls from people seeking abortion services in the fallout of last week’s U.S. Supreme Court order. In a one-paragraph, unsigned order issued just before midnight on Wednesday, Sept. 1, the court did not strike […]

Telemedicine abortions offer cheaper options but may also undermine critical clinics

BY: - September 7, 2021

Allison Hansen had just gone through a breakup with her boyfriend last year when she discovered she was pregnant. She already had an 8-year-old son and did not want another child. Hansen called the Planned Parenthood facility near her home in Savannah, Georgia, to inquire about abortion services and was told the procedure would cost […]

Poor access to menstrual products in N.M. creates health hazards

BY: - September 7, 2021

Advocates are illuminating for state legislators the expense of tampons, cups and pads in a low-income state, promising to again seek a tax break on menstrual products in the coming session. Their argument: Cutting the cost is one quick way to create more equity and dignity for people who need these products. Lawmakers balked at […]

Boosters are coming soon to N.M., but some vaccine distrust lingers

BY: - September 2, 2021

Sandra Jean Taylor, a lactation consultant with a bachelor’s degree in nutritional science, has already scheduled her COVID-19 booster shot.  She also found a Moderna vaccine trial for 7- and 11-year-old children and signed up her two children. “I am volunteering them for science,” Taylor said she told the recruitment team. “I feel 100% comfortable […]