The number of red light maximum risk states will double from five to 10 on Monday after the federal Health Ministry presented an updated coronavirus stoplight map on Friday amid skyrocketing new case numbers.
Mexico’s case tally surged past 1.6 million with more than 20,000 new cases reported for the first time since the start of the pandemic.
Mexico City, México state, Guanajuato, Morelos, Coahuila, Nuevo León, Jalisco, Querétaro, Hidalgo and Tlaxcala will be painted red on the stoplight map as of Monday.
The first four states are already red and will remain so for the next two weeks while the other six will switch to that color on Monday from high risk orange.
The hospital occupancy rate for general care beds is above 80% in five of the 10 red light states, according to data presented at the Health Ministry’s Friday night press briefing. They are Mexico City, 90%; Hidalgo, 86%; Guanajuato, 84%; México state, 83%; and Nuevo León, 81%.
Hospital occupancy is one of 10 indicators used by the Health Ministry to determine the stoplight color allocated to each state. Among the others are the Covid-19 effective reproduction rate (how many people each infected person infects), the weekly positivity rate (the percentage of Covid-19 tests that come back positive) and estimated case numbers per 100,000 inhabitants.
The number of orange light high risk states will decrease from 21 to 19 on Monday. Baja California Sur, Sinaloa, Sonora, Durango, Zacatecas, San Luis Potosí, Tamaulipas, Tabasco, Oaxaca, Puebla, Guerrero, Michoacán, Colima, Nayarit and Yucatán are already orange and remain that color on the updated map.
Baja California will switch to orange from red on Monday while Quintana Roo, Veracruz and Aguascalientes will change from medium risk yellow to orange.
Chiapas and Chihuahua will be the only yellow light states as of Monday. The risk level will increase in the former, which is currently green, and decrease in the latter, which is currently orange.
Campeche will be the only green light low risk state in the country as of Monday, retaining that status on the updated stoplight map. The risk level was downgraded to green in Campeche in late September and it has remained that color ever since.
Health Ministry official Ricardo Cortés said that 17 of the 19 orange light states are at risk of regressing to red. The federal government recommends the suspension of all nonessential economic activities in red light states but it is ultimately up to state governments to decide on the severity of restrictions.
In addition to presenting a new stoplight map, the Health Ministry on Friday reported 21,366 new coronavirus cases, setting a new single-day record for the second consecutive day. The accumulated case tally now stands at just under 1.61 million almost 11 months after the virus was first detected in Mexico.
The Covid-19 death toll rose to 139,022 on Friday with 1,106 additional fatalities registered. Health authorities reported more than 1,000 deaths on eight of the past 11 days.
There are currently 106,723 active coronavirus cases across the country, according to Health Ministry estimates, while just over 415,000 Covid-19 vaccine doses have been administered in Mexico, including 59,015 on Friday.