Almost 2.8 Million Participated In The Ohio Vax-a-Million Lottery | News, Sports, Jobs


COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – Nearly 2.8 million residents have signed up for Ohio’s Vax-a-Million Immunization Incentive Program, with participants hoping to win either the $ 1 million prize for adults, a full college scholarship for children, Governor Mike DeWine announced Monday.

He said vaccinations had increased statewide since the start of the lottery program. Vaccinations among 16 and 17 year olds jumped 94%; the 20-49 age group increased by 55% and the 18-19 age group increased by 46%, the Republican governor said.

“We have really seen increases in all demographic groups,” Said DeWine. “It’s a very, very good thing.”

Athens County, home of Ohio University, led the county’s growth, with a 144% increase in vaccinations, followed closely by Harrison, Morgan and Seneca counties.

DeWine said 2,758,470 Ohioans had registered by phone or a website for the drawing at midnight Sunday. Participants’ registrations make them eligible for the next four draws.

Winners will be announced Wednesday night at the end of Ohio Lottery’s Cash Explosion TV show, and then every Wednesday for the next four weeks. The agency conducted the first draw on Monday afternoon at the Ohio Lottery Draw Studio in Cleveland using a random number generator to pick winners in advance. The state must verify eligibility before confirming winners.

Vax-a-Million is open to permanent residents of Ohio who have received the one-dose vaccine from Johnson & Johnson or their first part of the two-dose Pfizer or Moderna vaccination.

Adults hoping to receive the $ 1 million prize and teens seeking college scholarships can apply on their own, but parents or legal guardians must verify eligibility.

Participants must register to register by phone or through the Vax-a-Million website, with names being carried forward from week to week.

DeWine announced the May 12 lottery as a way to build enthusiasm for COVID-19 vaccinations as the number of people receiving doses plummeted.

“I know some may say, ‘DeWine, you’re crazy! This million dollar drawing idea is a waste of money ”, he said at the time. But the real waste, when the vaccine is now readily available, “Is a life lost due to COVID-19”, said the governor.

The concept seemed to work, at least at first. The number of people aged 16 and over in Ohio who received their initial COVID-19 vaccine jumped 33% in the week after the state announced its million-dollar incentive lottery. dollars, according to an Associated Press analysis.

But the same review also found that vaccination rates are still well below the figures for April and March.

National Health Director Stephanie McCloud said the incentives were “Necessary to rekindle interest” get vaccinated and there has been a “Dramatic increase in vaccinations” in the 16 and over group.

More than 5.1 million people in Ohio had at least started the vaccination process as of Monday, or 44% of the state. About 4.5 million people have finished getting vaccinated, or 38% of the state.

DeWine’s proposal inspired similar vaccination incentive lotteries in New York and Maryland.

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