January 7, 2022

“The best way to thank our health care workers – the best way to help relieve the burden on their shoulders – is to heed their advice: get vaccinated,” said Governor Mills

Portland, MAINE – Governor Janet Mills today toured the Emergency Department (ED) and a COVID-19 Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Maine Medical Center in Portland where she spoke with and thanked hospital staff for their tireless efforts to save the lives of Maine people during the pandemic.

Governor Mills Visit to MMC

MMC President Jeff Sanders; Joy Moody, RN, MMC ED; Governor Mills; Commissioner Lambrew; Nancijean Goudey, RN, MMC ED

During a media availability following the tour, the Governor called on Maine people to join her in thanking health care workers by stepping up to get vaccinated. The vast majority of people hospitalized in Maine are not fully vaccinated against COVID-19. As of Friday, January 7, there were a record 391 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Maine, including 110 in critical care and 59 on ventilators. There are currently 55 available intensive care unit (ICU) beds available in Maine.

“Health care workers are the heart of our response to COVID-19. They’ve been on the frontlines for nearly two years saving the lives of Maine people, all while enduring risks to their own health and the added pressure and stress of the job. During this difficult time, I want them to know how thankful we are for all they are doing,” said Governor Mills. “Whether you provide health care at a hospital, at a doctor’s office, in a nursing or assisted living facility, at a vaccination site, in someone’s home, or in the back of an ambulance, please know, that Maine is grateful to you. But the best way to thank our health care workers – the best way to relieve the burden on their shoulders – is to heed their advice: get vaccinated. I urge all Maine people to get vaccinated so you can stay out of the hospital, protect our youngest citizens, and make sure all Maine people get medical care, regardless of whether it’s related to COVID.”

“We are very grateful for the support we’ve received from the National Guard and federal government at the request of Governor Mills these past few weeks,” said Maine Medical Center President Jeff Sanders. “Our care team is continuing to show incredible resilience in the face of historically high patient volume due to COVID-19 and behavioral health crises at a time when we are short-staffed due to COVID-related absences. Every bit of support helps.”

Following her tour of MMC, Governor Mills also visited a vaccination clinic hosted by MaineHealth.

To find a vaccination site visit maine.gov/covid19/vaccines or call the Community Vaccination Line at 1-888-445-4111.