OHIO (KSNT) — Vaccinated kids and adults in Ohio will have separate lotteries offering them high-dollar incentives to get the COVID-19 shot.
Five adults will win $1 million each over several weeks, while vaccinated kids aged 12 to 17 have the chance at five four-year scholarships with all-expenses paid to an Ohio university.
Could incentives like this be coming to Kansas?
Kansas Governor Laura Kelly told KSNT she’ll be watching these incentives to see how they work.
“Well I heard about that yesterday, too, and I thought, well that’s innovative. I’m really anxious to see the results,” Gov. Laura Kelly said in Kansas.
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced on Wednesday that a lottery portal for the scholarships will open on May 18 for young people who have been vaccinated. On May 26 they will announce the first winner of the drawing. This will go on for five weeks each Wednesday until the scholarships are distributed.
“The winner will receive a full four-year scholarship to any one of our state universities,” DeWine promised. “This will include tuition, room and board and books. We will do this every Wednesday for five straight Wednesdays, each time randomly selecting one student to receive the full four-years scholarship.”
“The state of Kansas wants to do whatever we can to facilitate the kinds of incentives that we see happening in other states that appear to be working. So, stay tuned for some news around some restaurants that are going to be interested in providing free appetizers or meals for individuals who get vaccinated,” Dr. Marci Nielsen, Chief Advisor of Vaccine Distribution in the state of Kansas said earlier this week.
Adults who have received at least their first dose of the vaccine will be entered into a separate drawing, also scheduled to be announced on May 26.
Kansas will continue to monitor what works in other states, and move cautiously.
“There’s always a concern when you’re providing incentives that people don’t feel coerced in any way, so the state will want to be very mindful that the kinds of incentives that we are advocating are incentives that feel the right size, and make people feel excited about getting vaccinated,” Nielson said.
Money for the lottery comes from federal coronavirus relief funds. The Ohio lottery will conduct the draw. To be eligible to win, you must be at least 18 years of age or older. On the day of the draw, you must be Ohio resident and vaccinated before the drawing.
“I know that some of you now shaking your heads and saying, ‘Mike DeWine, he’s crazy. This million dollar drawing idea of yours is a waste of money.’
“The real waste at this point in the pandemic — when the vaccine is readily available to anyone who wants it — the real waste is a life that was lost now to COVID-19,” said DeWine.