Supervisor Fletcher paints dire picture of San Diego’s COVID situation before Christmas

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – After starting Wednesday’s press conference by warning San Diegans of “the severity of the situation” regarding COVID in San Diego County, Supervisor Nathan Fletcher pleaded with San Diegans to obey the safety guidelines to lower our local coronavirus numbers.

Chairman Cox and Supervisor Fletcher blamed the record number of positive coronavirus cases on people who “made bad decisions” to gather for Thanksgiving, and predicted the same thing will happen after Christmas, only worse.

Fletcher began his speech Wednesday saying, “as we head into the Christmas holiday we are faced with the stark reality that this is the darkest hour and darkest time we’ve faced throughout our duration of COVID. Our cases, hospitalizations, ICU utilization, all those numbers continue to head in the wrong direction.”

Touching on the rising hospitalizations in San Diego County, Fletcher said, “this is not a good trend. It is only going in one direction, and it is only going up.”

Dr. Wilma Wooten then spoke, adding what she believes to be justification for Gavin Newsom’s extension of the stay-at-home order for regions across the state, including Southern California. Wooten explained, “it has been almost three weeks since the stay at home order for Southern California went into effect, and the situation has not significantly improved. And things, therefore, are not getting better.” Continuing, “the regional stay-at-home order will remain in place until the region has an ICU bed capability or availability above 15%”

For clarification on Fletcher’s dire outlook on our situation, KUSI submitted the following question via text to the County press briefing; “California has the strictest regulations in the country. Why is our situation so much worse than in state with little restrictions like Florida and Texas?”

Supervisor Fletcher answered the question by saying it is not a “fair comparison, in terms of the numbers of cases.”

But, KUSI’s question did not refer specifically to the number of positive cases, we were asking about the two styles of response from the governments in Florida and Texas, and our government here in San Diego County/California.

Florida and Texas businesses and restaurants are open, with little restrictions, while thousands of businesses across San Diego County and the state of California have been forced to close to abide by the coronavirus restrictions.

Overdoses in San Diego County are around triple the amount compared to this time last year, and the governor has just told us the stay-at-home order will be extended.

Fletcher said, “KUSI News may not be aware of this but California has twice as many people as Florida has. I would point you to the Tampa Bay Times, a publication in Florida, which recently did an analysis, and it showed that per person, Florida has more COVID cases than California. Per person, Florida has more hospitalizations than California, and per person, Florida has more COVID deaths than California. So I’m not sure that highlighting Florida as a model of what we got to do necessarily makes a very strong argument.”



Categories: Coronavirus, Health, Local San Diego News, Politics