Coming up on Connections: Thursday, May 13

May 13, 2021

Credit Max Schulte / WXXI News

First hour: Exploring how people are weighing the decision to get vaccinated

Second hour: What losing their sense of smell has meant for COVID-19 patients

Millions of American adults have not gotten vaccinated against COVID-19…by choice. We meet people who have been on the fence about the vaccines, and we welcome expert medical analysis to address individual concerns. Data finds that the vaccines are working in clear, powerful fashion: the six most vaccinated states in the country combined for a total of six COVID deaths on Wednesday. This hour there will be no shaming, no mocking, no condescending. Just a conversation about how some Americans are weighing the decision. Our guests:

  • Steve Cook, M.D., pediatrician with Golisano Children's Hospital who has administered hundreds of vaccines since January
  • Jessica Lewis, Torri Cowans, Taneika Thompson, and August Dunlop, members of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc., who will share their own views of the vaccine and the factors they've been weighing to make a decision

Then in our second hour, one of the strangest impacts of COVID-19 is the loss of smell and taste for some patients. Researchers are still not entirely sure why this happens, but when it does, it can be devastating. Some patients recover their senses within weeks. Some need more time. And some could lose those senses permanently, which is why local doctors are working to help retrain their noses and brains to smell again. 13WHAM's Doug Emblidge spent time with patients to understand this unusual symptom of COVID and what it means for their lives. Our guests:

  • Isaac Schmale, M.D., ear, nose, and throat surgeon at the University of Rochester Medical Center
  • Doug Emblidge, anchor at 13WHAM News
  • Kelby Russell, head winemaker at Red Newt Cellars and his own eponymous label, and co-chair of the FLXcursion Conference
  • Tiffany Hilbert, leader of the Hilbert Team at Keller Williams Realty