Island Hopping Drones Could Help Bridge the Covid Vaccine Equality Divide

About This Source - Bloomberg QuickTake: Now

Bloomberg L.P. is a privately held financial, software, data, and media company headquartered in Midtown Manhattan, New York City.

It was founded by Michael Bloomberg in 1981, with the help of Thomas Secunda, Duncan MacMillan, Charles Zegar, and a 12% ownership investment by Merrill Lynch.

Recent from Bloomberg QuickTake: Now:

  • LIVE: White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki Holds Briefing in Washington, D.C.
  • Classes Canceled for Two Days at Knoxville High School After Fatal Shooting
  • Minnesota Police Clash With Protesters for Second Night Over Daunte Wright Death
  • Bloomberg Quicktake: Now published this video item, entitled “Island Hopping Drones Could Help Bridge the Covid Vaccine Equality Divide” – below is their description.

    In the debate over whether the rich will receive Covid-19 inoculations ahead of the poor, or city dwellers before rural communities, few places illustrate the difficulty of vaccine equity in a global economy better than Miami.

    Home of America’s wealthiest zip code, the sun-soaked city on Florida’s southern tip is also the main air-cargo bridge between the developed world and Haiti, Nicaragua and other impoverished countries across the Caribbean and Latin America.

    That puts Miami International Airport, one of the nation’s largest freight hubs and one of the few certified to handle pharmaceuticals, at a key crossroads in the effort to distribute shots quickly to the masses in the U.S. and its poor neighbors to the south.

    In Europe and the U.S., vaccines will go to the elderly, health-care workers and first responders before fanning out to the general population. Likely to take several months, the logistical relay race kicked off this weekend between drug makers, couriers FedEx Corp. and United Parcel Service Inc., air freight carriers and trucking companies.

    Late Friday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted emergency authorization for the vaccine developed by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE. Gustave Perna, the army general who serves as chief operating officer for the government’s Operation Warp Speed, said on Saturday the shots will start rolling out from manufacturing to distribution centers on Sunday.

    Within days, the immunizations will be offered at central locations including Miami’s largest hospital, Jackson Memorial. Good news for locals, but airport officials are asking broader questions tied to their role running the country’s busiest turnstile for international air cargo.

    What about places like the Bahamas, an archipelago of sparsely populated islands starting 50 miles off Florida’s coast and stretching across 100,000 square miles of ocean?

    “It’s going to take a long time — this is not going to be easy,” said Emir Pineda, manager of aviation trade and logistics at Miami’s airport. “The more urban areas, the large cities, will probably be the first to benefit from the vaccines.”

    “As we start spreading into more remote areas, it’s going to become more and more difficult,” he said. “How do you get to each one of those little islands? It’s going to be a difficult task.”

    Shipping Pfizer and BioNTech’s Vaccine

    It must be stored at ultra-cold temperatures of -94 degrees Fahrenheit

    Sources: Pfizer, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

    The delivery vehicle is only part of the challenge. The Pfizer-BioNTech shipments contain dry ice and more may needed to prevent spoilage on the last leg of long journeys. But Florida has no dry-ice makers, Pineda said, so supplies will be trucked in from Georgia. Not a huge problem, if only they knew how much they’ll need, and when.

    “You’ve got a lot of demand, and not knowing is part of the big problem,” Pineda said.

    Leading up to Friday’s FDA decision, officials at Miami’s airport determined that the facility has 395,000 square feet of refrigerated space, 27,000 of which is dedicated to pharmaceuticals. They surveyed the tarmac on the expectation that vaccine charters will need to a place to park. They designated an area for truck parking and outlined traffic patterns to avoid congestion for payloads with a short expiration date.

    Bloomberg Quicktake: Now YouTube Channel

    Got a comment? Leave your thoughts in the comments section, below. Please note comments are moderated before publication.

    In This Story: Bahamas

    The Bahamas, known officially as the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, is a country within the Lucayan Archipelago of the West Indies in the Atlantic. It takes up 97% of the Lucayan Archipelago’s land area and is home to 88% of the archipelago’s population.

    The archipelagic state consists of more than 700 islands, cays, and islets in the Atlantic Ocean, and is located north of Cuba and Hispaniola Island (Haiti and the Dominican Republic), northwest of the Turks and Caicos Islands, southeast of the US state of Florida, and east of the Florida Keys.

    The capital is Nassau on the island of New Providence. The Royal Bahamas Defence Force describes The Bahamas’ territory as encompassing 470,000 km2 (180,000 sq mi) of ocean space. The country gained governmental independence in 1973 led by Sir Lynden O. Pindling, with Elizabeth II as its queen.

    2 Recent Items: Bahamas

  • The Bahamas: The World’s First Digital Currency | F&D Magazine
  • College student and music producer on being Black in P.E.I.
  • In This Story: COVID-19

    Covid-19 is the official WHO name given to the novel coronavirus which broke out in late 2019 and began to spread in the early months of 2020.

    Symptoms of coronavirus

    The main symptoms of coronavirus are:

    • a persistent new cough (non productive, dry)
    • a high temperature (e.g. head feels warm to the touch)
    • shortness of breath (if this is abnormal for the individual, or increased)

    Latest News about Covid-19

    Below are stories from around the globe related to the 2020 outbreak of novel Coronavirus – since the WHO gave the Covid-19 naming. Most recent items are posted nearest the top.

    5 Recent Items: COVID-19

  • How Ramadan will be different this year
  • Is UK Covid vaccine rollout still on track as another jab delayed over blood clot fears | ITV News
  • Afghanistan & other topics – Daily Briefing (13 April 2021)
  • Classes Canceled for Two Days at Knoxville High School After Fatal Shooting
  • J&J vaccine paused due to rare blood-clotting issues
  • In This Story: Haiti

    Haiti is a Caribbean country that shares the island of Hispaniola with the Dominican Republic to its east. Though it’s still recovering from a 2010 earthquake, many of Haiti’s landmarks dating to the early 19th century remain intact. These include Citadelle la Ferrière, a mountaintop fortress.

    Jean-Jacques Dessalines (later Emperor Jacques I), defeated Napoleon Bonaparte’s forces and declared Haiti’s sovereignty on 1 January 1804.

    Haiti became the only state in history established by a successful slave revolt. Apart from Alexandre Pétion, the first President of the Republic, all of Haiti’s first leaders were former slaves.

    2 Recent Items: Haiti

  • Is Haiti losing its COVID-19 fight? | The Stream
  • Crisis in Haiti: Seven Catholic clergy kidnapped, held for ransom
  • Leave a Comment