Ohio Governor Mike DeWine revealed Wednesday that the state of Ohio would grant $1 million to five vaccinated people in an attempt to increase vaccination rates.
“We will name the winner of a separate lottery for adults who have had at least their first injection of the vaccine two weeks from tonight, on May 26th. This announcement will take place every Wednesday for the next five weeks, with the winner receiving a million dollars on each occasion “DeWine mentioned this in a tweet thread on Wednesday.
The draws will be administered by the Ohio lottery, according to DeWine. Both Ohio adults over the age of 18 who have had at least one injection of a COVID-19 vaccine are eligible.
The winners will be drawn from the state of Ohio’s electronic voter registry database. Many that are not eligible to vote but wish to be entered into the lottery will do so by signing up on a page that will be open in the coming weeks.
According to DeWine, the funds for the $5 million donations and the expense of administering the drawing will come from current federal COVID-19 relief funds. He did not say what the funds were initially intended for.
“Some might say, ‘DeWine, you’re crazy!’ Your million-dollar painting proposal is a waste of money.’ But, at this stage in the pandemic, as the vaccine is easily available to everyone who needs it, the true waste is a life lost to COVID-19 “DeWine sent a tweet on Wednesday.
DeWine has revealed a special draw for people who have been vaccinated but are under the age of 18. This lottery will also choose one winner per week for the next five weeks, starting on May 26.
“The winner will earn a perfect, four-year scholarship to one of our state universities,” DeWine said on Twitter. “Tuition, room and board, and books are all included.”
DeWine also said on Wednesday that the Ohio Department of Health would lift all COVID-related health directives on June 2nd, “except those for nursing homes and assisted living facilities.”
“In fact, based upon the experiences of other states, we expect that many stores or businesses may require social distancing and masking,” DeWine tweeted.
The announcements coincide with a drive to vaccinate as many Ohio residents as possible. DeWine emphasized the importance of vaccines in a statewide speech, noting that “those who are not vaccinated remain prey to the virus.”
“We hope for a good summer, but we also have to be able to get through the dark days of winter safely. To do that, we need a much higher percentage of Ohioans to be vaccinated,” DeWine said. He also noted that between January 1 and April 13, “Nearly 100% of hospitalizations occurred among those not vaccinated.”