Finance committee approves recommendation for new jail medical provider
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - The Charleston County finance committee approved a selection committee’s recommendation for a new inmate medical provider starting this summer.
Following an hour-and-a-half-long executive session behind closed doors Thursday evening, the committee voted unanimously in favor of awarding the contract bid to VitalCore Health Strategies.
The current medical provider, Wellpath, has come under fire recently after two inmates in the last four months have died.
The cause of death has not been released for 50-year-old Julian Jenkins, but the Charleston County coroner ruled 28-year-old D’Angelo Brown’s death a homicide by “gross medical neglect.”
Wellpath’s contract expires on June 30, more than three years after the initial contract was signed.
The Sheriff’s Office has released dozens of non-conformance reports since June 2022 about Wellpath’s services, including days when inmates were not given medications and when there were no providers on site.
Earlier this month, a five-person committee made up mostly of jail staffers and one Charleston County staff member scored VitalCore Health Strategies the highest of all three bidders.
Emails released by the Sheriff’s Office reveal that the agency did not approve of any of the vendors that applied for the County’s request-for-proposal and have asked for the request for proposal to be re-solicited.
The contract bid will be awarded after a final vote by Charleston County Council slated for next week’s meeting on Tuesday.
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