SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) – The New Mexico Department of Health is urging parents to register children ages 12 to 15 for eventual access to coronavirus vaccines when shots are approved for lower age groups.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for kids ages 12 and up next week, setting up shots for many before the beginning of the next school year.
Health Department spokesman David Morgan said Tuesday that the agency encourages parents to register children right away with the state’s vaccination website to help ensure access.
Separately, Health Department spokesman Matt Bieber said the state is trying to address hesitancy toward the vaccine by providing mobile and walkup vaccination clinics that can increase convenience and reach more people who may be unable or unwilling to register online.
New Mexico also in encouraging physicians to discuss the vaccine with patients as trusted sources of medical information.
And the state is developing an online registration form for groups to request a visit from mobile vaccination clinics.
Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and top health officials say the state is on track to have at least 60% of residents fully vaccinated by the end of June. That would allow capacity limits at restaurants and other businesses to be lifted and the state economy to fully reopen.
The latest state data shows more than 45% of residents 16 and older are fully vaccinated, and that nearly 59% have had one shot.
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