State paying more than $1M weekly for Gillette, Fenway sites

Coronavirus Local Impact

People enter a socially distanced line to get their COVID-19 vaccinations at Gillette Stadium, Monday, Feb. 8, 2021, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

BOSTON (AP)–Massachusetts is paying a total of more than $1 million per week to the for-profit startup that is running coronavirus mass vaccination sites at Fenway Park and Gillette Stadium, according to state records.

The more than $625,000 weekly price tag for Gillette includes a minimum weekly payment of $344,575, the Boston Herald reported Friday, citing state documents obtained in a public records request. The Fenway site is costing the state more than $540,000 weekly.

Both are run by CIC Health. The company declined comment.

Eastfield Mall vaccination site mostly used by non-Springfield residents

The state failed to provide complete contracts for two other vendors running mass vaccination sites in Massachusetts. But contracts for Curative — which operates mass vaccination sites in Springfield and Danvers — show the state is paying $45 per shot in addition to covering expenses for security and traffic control. Curative also declined comment.

Some state lawmakers question whether the state is getting a good deal. “I am extremely concerned that these private companies are being paid exorbitant amounts of our tax dollars instead of utilizing capable, local cities and towns to assist with distribution,” state Sen. Diana DiZoglio, D-Methuen, told the Herald.

She has called on the state auditor and inspector general to investigate a growing number of no-bid contracts handed out by the state during the pandemic.

How to sign up for COVID vaccine in western Massachusetts

Gov. Charlie Baker defended the decision to hire private companies. “This is a race against time,” he said Thursday, noting local public health infrastructure “had a lot of catching up to do.”

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