Dr. Shah, Director of the MaineCDC, announced this afternoon that a significantly high number of deaths from the coronavirus have occurred since yesterday’s report: Five deaths have occurred and they were all residents of the Maine Veteran’s Home, Scarborough. The youngest was 50, and the other four were in their 70s and 90s. All five served this country as veterans and Dr. Shah urged a moment to honor them for their unselfish service to this country.
Dr. Shah reported 937 cases of the coronavirus – an increase in 30 cases since yesterday. He said that many of these are outbreaks at nursing homes in Maine. Twenty-three of the 44 who are deceased were from long-term facilities or nursing homes. The predominance of deliveries of PPE continues, as in the past, to be to long-term facilities in the State. Falmouth by the Sea, Falmouth Foreside, a private nursing home, has reported a total of eighteen confirmed cases of coronavirus – an increase of three cases from previous reporting. There are 8 residents and 10 staff members infected with the deadly virus.
Upon questioning from the press, Dr. Shah responded: “There remains a challenge to receiving the necessary chemicals needed to do testing.” Trumpy likes to tout his fake news that testing is fine and not an issue for Governors across the country at his daily coronavirus briefings. Dr. Fauci disagrees with him claiming that testing is not adequate at this time. “We need to ramp up our testing capabilities,” said Dr. Fauci recently. Does that mean that the popular Dr. Fauci is on the way out too?
Governor Janet T. Mills, the first women Governor of Maine, addressed the press conference saying: “We all would like to return to normal as soon as possible. Being too aggressive and opening too soon could cause a second wave of the virus.” The following are considerations to be considered when opening Maine the Governor said: 1. Protecting the public health; 2. Maintaining health care readiness; 3. Building reliable testing for all who are systematic; 4. Prioritizing public/private collaboration. To assist in prioritizing ideas from the private sector, the Governor and her administration have set up a portal: www.maine.gov/decd. to receive all ideas.
The Economic and Community Development office, Directed by Heather Johnson, will solicit positive ideas on collecting reasonable ideas on how to reopen the state through this portal. The Department will solicit from representatives of industries and various sectors of Maine’s economy their ideas on how they can develop practical, reasonable evidence on informed protocols that will allow them to safely resume operations or activities once the benchmarks are met.
On April 16, state Republicans wrote a letter to the Governor asking for more communication between it and the Governor. She responded that these briefings are one way of informing the state legislature of the latest developments in the COVID-19 pandemic in Maine. (Please see post herein dated April 20, 2020 for more information on this letter).
The Governor said that she is in frequent consultation with the Governors of New Hampshire and Vermont. Among the subjects discussed are beaches, golf courses and medical issues. “We don’t want to contribute to a high incidence of travel among states,” she said.
The Governor’s Stay at Home Order remains in effect until April 30, 2020.