New York and Maryland latest states to launch lottery vaccination schemes

By Peter Lynch

New York and Maryland have joined Ohio in offering free lottery tickets to people who get a Covid-19 vaccine.

The schemes aim to boost immunisation rates across the states, and come a week after Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced its Vax-a-Million program. Since the announcement in Ohio, vaccination rates among those 16 and older have reportedly risen by more than 28%.

In New York, those who are 18 years old or above getting a Covid vaccine from one of the state’s ten clinics will receive a scratch-off Mega Multiplier lottery ticket. The chances of winning is one in nine, with the winnings varying in size from $20 to $5 million.

“We know that vaccinations are the vital piece of the puzzle we need to crush Covid once and for all,” said New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (pictured). “We're doing everything we can to make getting a vaccine as quick and easy as possible, but as vaccination rates slow across the state, we're going to have to get creative.

“This new pilot program will offer a greater incentive for New Yorkers to get vaccinated by offering a free scratch-off ticket for a chance to win up to $5 million. The more New Yorkers we can get vaccinated, the better our situation and the faster we can return to a new normal.”

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan meanwhile announced that the Maryland Department of Health has partnered with the Maryland Lottery to launch the $2m VaxCash Promotion, which will award $2m in cash prizes to a total of 41 Maryland residents who have been vaccinated.

“The goal is just to get those reluctant folks, or people who just haven't thought about it,” said Hogan. “So remember Maryland, get your shot for a shot to win.”


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