Dr. Nirav Shah of the Maine CDC Has a FB Fan Page
In the midst of a crisis, Mainers have found a hero in the form of the Executive Director of the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Each weekday, Dr. Nirav Shah gives a press briefing to update residents on the latest developments in the state's COVID-19 pandemic. The statistics are grim, with the number of people who have been diagnosed with the virus, how many have died, and how many (or, rather, how few) pieces of personal protective equipment are available to the state's healthcare workers.
But, on the Fans of Dr. Nirav Shah Facebook page, the talk is not only of the statistics. It's also about a man who delivers those daily briefings in a calm manner. He recognizes, at the end of the briefing, that the current climate is emotionally challenging, and that people are struggling to get used to the "new norm."
He gives credence to every reporter's questions, even though they are sometimes repetitive. Sipping on a Diet Coke, he quotes Coldplay and relates the current climate to a Stephen King story. The briefings are held each weekday at 11:15 a.m. You can watch them here.
I interviewed Dr. Shah a few weeks before the virus made it to Maine, and I have to agree, he's an engaging person. He's well-spoken and reassuring. While some doctors I've interviewed are clinical and use doctor-speak, Dr. Shah makes everything easy to understand. We're lucky to have such a relatable leader of the Maine CDC. He truly makes us believe that we will get through this and that Maine's healthcare leaders have it under control.
In these trying times, remember to take the advice of his fan page: Keep Calm and Listen to Dr. Shah.