Vital Signs newsletter: Maine’s chief health officer resigns

Sorry for the delay today folks, technical issues gummed up the works this morning.

With no further ado…

Maine’s public health agency typically works behind the scenes, encouraging vaccination and healthy habits, shoring up disaster expertise and supplies, and supporting local health promotion programs. Historically, the agency made headlines only when an infectious disease or other health threat endangered the state (swine flu, anyone?)

But recent months have cast the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention in the political spotlight — a document-shredding scandal, staffing reductions, and fevered debate over its response to health care workers returning from Ebola-stricken West Africa (Kaci Hickox, anyone?)

Now, Dr. Sheila Pinette, the CDC’s director of the last four years who was just reassigned as the state’s chief health officer, is leaving her post. Read what she has to say about why.

Maine’s chief health officer resigns

Other top health stories:

How healthy are your neighbors? New report ranks Maine counties

Sagadahoc County residents, congratulations. You’re the healthiest in Maine. Somerset County dwellers, bad news. You’re the least healthy.

Maine budget writers reject LePage plan for tobacco settlement money

The legislation, which now faces additional votes in the House and Senate, could be the first financial litmus test for the 127th Legislature, which must approve a new two-year state budget.

Meals on Wheels limiting service because of budget cuts

“You know they need it, and there’s not much you can do,” Allison Wood, a Meals on Wheels nutrition and volunteer coordinator in Waldo County, said of people who rely on the program.

From our bloggers

Diane Atwood, Catching Health

How to get a good night’s sleep and why it’s important

Do you find that the older you get, the more trouble you have sleeping? You’re not alone.

Bobbi McCarthy, Love Nursing

What does a nurse do anyway?

Educating people to become a nurse entails so much more than teaching the technical skills required.

From the source

Dr. Heidi Wierman of Maine Medical Center in Portland testified Wednesday in Washington, D.C., at a hearing about the country’s fight against Alzheimer’s disease. Read her remarks before the Senate Special Committee on Aging, chaired by Maine Sen. Susan Collins, here.

Compiled by BDN Health Editor Jackie Farwell

Jackie Farwell

About Jackie Farwell

I'm the health editor for the Bangor Daily News, a Bangor native, a UMaine grad, and a weekend crossword warrior. I never get sick of writing about Maine people, geeking out over health care data, and finding new ways to help you stay well. I live in Gorham with my husband Nick and our hound dog Riley.