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Cuba Vaccinating Toddlers For COVID, Doctors Refusing The Unvaccinated, Virus Sniffing Dogs

A COVID-sniffing dog, Happy, with handler Wayne Weseman, checks a Miami Heat fan at the AmericanAirlines Arena for the Heat game against the Denver Nuggets on Jan. 27, 2021.
Miami Herald
A COVID-sniffing dog, Happy, with handler Wayne Weseman, checks a Miami Heat fan at the AmericanAirlines Arena for the Heat game against the Denver Nuggets on Jan. 27, 2021.

On this, Tuesday, Sept. 14, episode of Sundial. 

Cuba Vaccinating Toddlers For COVID

In the United States, you need to be 12 years old or older to access a COVID-19 vaccine.

Emergency use authorization for those younger than 12 isn’t expected from the Food and Drug Administration until later this fall or early next year.

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However, in Cuba, children as young as 2 years old have started receiving their shots.

"The country wants to reopen schools and have the majority of the population vaccinated by November," said Tim Padgett, WLRN’s Americas editor. "The nationwide protests this summer were in part launched by discontent over the country's handling of the virus."

The Cuban government is yet to have approval from the World Health Organization but the country’s officials say that the vaccines are considered safe for young children.

Padgett also joined Sundial for an update on the border conflict between Venezuela and Guyana. Find more about that story here.

Cuba Vaccinating Toddlers For COVID

Doctors Refusing The Unvaccinated

Recently, a South Miami doctor told her patients that she would not allow them for in-person appointments unless they were vaccinated.

And that raises the question, can a doctor refuse to see a patient based on their vaccine status? Professor Kenneth Goodman is the director of the Institute for Bioethics and Health Policy at the University of Miami and director of the statewide bioethics network.

"If I show up unvaccinated — I'm not just claiming a right to be treated. I'm claiming the right to imperil others," he said.

Goodman explained hospitals are required by law to treat all patients that come through their doors, regardless of their vaccination status. The ethical debate is underway for private practices.

Doctors Refusing The Unvaccinated

Virus Sniffing Dogs

A pair of dogs are sniffing employees for COVID-19 at Miami International Airport.

MIA is one of the busiest airports in the country and the first in the U.S. to use dogs to help prevent the spread of the virus. Florida International University provost Kenneth G. Furton is a professor of chemistry and biochemistry, he’s leading the pilot program.

“We don’t know exactly what the dogs are smelling, but we believe they are volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, that come from your body when you come infected with the COVID-19 virus,” Furton said.

The pilot program launched last month and it’s in partnership between the county and Florida International University.

Virus Sniffing Dogs

Leslie Ovalle Atkinson is the former lead producer behind Sundial. As a multimedia producer, she also worked on visual and digital storytelling.
Chris knew he wanted to work in public radio beginning in middle school, as WHYY played in his car rides to and from school in New Jersey. He’s freelanced for All Things Considered and was a desk associate for CBS Radio News in New York City. Most recently, he was producing for Capital Public Radio’s Insight booking guests, conducting research and leading special projects at Sacramento’s NPR affiliate.