Click here for the latest coronavirus news, which the BDN has made free for the public. You can support our critical reporting on the coronavirus by purchasing a digital subscription or donating directly to the newsroom.
Mainers have been on their computer screens at home, watching Nirav Shah, director of the Maine Center for Disease Control, give his daily updates on the coronavirus spread throughout Maine. The Coldplay-quoting doctor is now a household name throughout the state.
After delivering the news on Wednesday that two more Maine residents died from COVID-19 — bringing the statewide death toll to 14 — Shah provided a general update and fielded questions from the media. Here are the most notable moments from the Maine CDC’s April 8 press conference.
Common myths about COVID-19
Here, Shah answers a press question about the myths he hears from his friends and family. He wants people to know: No demographic is immune, and put down all the unnecessary supplements. There’s no magic pill nor is there a magical vitamin C capsule.
What Nirav Shah is most worried about
When asked what keeps him up at night, Shah addressed the continuing challenges the state faces when fighting COVID-19, including the shortages of personal protective equipment, or PPE.
What does returning to normal look like?
A question on many people’s minds is when life will look normal and which benchmarks will get us there. Shah explains that just like Maine became immersed in this crisis incrementally, the return to normalcy will likely be completed in phases, and it might not look the same throughout the state.
Nirav Shah addresses racial disparities in treating coronavirus cases nationwide
When asked about reports from other cities about racial disparities in the diagnosis and treatment of the coronavirus, Shah said the Maine CDC is tracking that data and working to prevent a similar situation in Maine.
Nirav Shah thanks everyday Mainers for staying inside
Nirav Shah concluded his opening remarks by thanking everyday Mainers for staying inside. He even threw in what appeared to be a “Tiger King” reference.
“No one thanks you for canceling your child’s birthday party. No one thanks you for postponing your wedding. No one thanks you for not going to prom, and no one thanks you for fundamentally changing the way you observe and celebrate important religious holidays, but I’d like to change that today,” Shah said.
Watch the full Maine CDC press conference for April 8