Supervisor Fletcher Dodges Questions Regarding Blue Shield Partnership for Vaccine Distribution

Written by Justin Culetu

With the California economy struggling to return back to normal due to poor leadership and a flawed color tier plan, San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher is refusing to provide answers regarding the County’s partnership with Blue Shield for vaccine distribution.

Blue Shield was set to partner with California counties to begin running the state’s COVID-19 vaccine program, with San Diego having been expected to reach a deal as soon as March 7th. However, nearly all 58 of California’s counties have not yet partnered with the company.

Possible reasons for this include concerns from counties and health providers about Blue Shield requiring an excessive level of access to patient health records, expecting providers to schedule vaccine appointments through the state’s MyTurn system, and imposing a complex change of rules on local health departments and their vaccination system. 

However, Fletcher did not specify the reasons behind the hold up of a possible contract with the insurance company, which could help make the vaccine rollout more efficient and open businesses and schools faster. When pressed for details on the matter, Fletcher responded with little to no detail. “I’m not going to point to specific things. It’s an ongoing discussion about what an arrangement would look like and how it will work,” Fletcher said. “This will get resolved.”

This is not Fletcher’s first time stonewalling the public. He previously declined to provide any reasoning for why San Diego is so far behind on reopening and lied when asked why police officers were not eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. He later voted against allowing officers to be vaccinated, despite previously saying that “federal and state guidance,” was the reason.

Fletcher’s unwillingness to answer basic questions leaves the public yearning for answers. Many states are moving towards higher levels of reopening, with some states fully open, such as Texas and Florida. Meanwhile, San Diegans have been left struggling due to a lack of leadership skills by Sup. Fletcher and the rest of the Democrat-controlled Board of Supervisors. If the main concern holding back California from reopening are vaccinations, our elected officials should be upfront and honest about what is being done to remedy the situation.

Photo by Sam Hodgson / The San Diego Union-Tribune