Mississippi doctor has become viral sensation, COVID-19 hero for country thousands of miles away

Published 11:55 am Monday, May 3, 2021

A Mississippi doctor has become a COVID-19 hero and a social media sensation in his home country more than 6,000 miles away.

Dr. Zurab Guruli, chief of Anesthesiology at the G.V. (Sonny) Montgomery VA Medical Center in Jackson, was recently featured in a PBS New Hour segment about Guruli’s efforts to help the nation of Georgia and its residents respond to the ever-growing health emergency in that country during the COVID-19 crisis.

A native of Georgia, Guruli graduated from Tbilisi State Medical University in 1992. He then completed an anesthesiology residency program at Tulane University and has practiced medicine in the U.S. for more than 20 years.

Guruli and another Georgian doctor, Dr. Nana Gegetchkori in New York City, collaborated from their respective offices in New York and Mississippi to battle the pandemic in the country sandwiched between Russia and Turkey.

At one point last year, the country of nearly 4 million people and very limited health resources had the highest incidence of COVID-19 in the world per 1,000 people.

Realizing the potential health emergency disaster in their home country and wanting to do what they could to help, the two doctors worked via social media to provide information about the disease and treatment for the disease.

“Pandemic is like a war and what is the most important thing in the wars? Intelligence. Especially in such a condition when you do not know your enemy,” Guruli said at one point during the news story.

As a result of their efforts, the two doctors have viral sensations in their home country, advising doctors and patients, largely on social media.

Click this link to see the story reported by Hari Sreenivasan.