A throwback photo has emerged of one of Australia’s top health bosses showing him with an unusual haircut in his youth.
Deputy chief medical officer Nick Coatsworth is one of the country’s most prominent doctors leading the nation’s fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
In interview on Channel Ten’s The Project on Sunday night, Comedian Susie Youseff presented him with an old photo showing the infectious disease expert rocking long braided locks.
‘The hair has been a subject of a lot of talk for my entire life,’ he said of the style.
‘I’ve put it down to my great-great grandfather Mohammed Ishmael who is Indian Malay. That is where I get the hair from.’
The doctor also admitted he gets nervous during press conferences and has ‘imposter syndrome’, despite his calm exterior.
‘I’m actually quite self conscious when I get up in front of people,’ he said.
‘I don’t know why that is and I’m aware it doesn’t really project but that is how I’m feeling on the inside.’
He cited his first press conference alongside health minister Greg Hunt an example.
‘I thought wow, talk about impostor syndrome, what am I doing here?’ he said.
Dr Coastworth is not the first government official in recent weeks to be in the spotlight over past hairstyles.
Victoria’s chief health officer Brett Sutton has become as an unexpected sex symbol, amassing thousands of female followers after a similarly old photo emerged of him with a long-hair do.
Fans of Prof Sutton, who has fronted near-daily press conferences during the crisis, call themselves ‘Sutttonettes’.
One Facebook group, ‘Brett Sutton is Hot’, has more than 9,000 followers, while the less popular ‘Brett Sutton Fan Club’ has 2,000 members and growing.