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$1 million in scholarship incentives offered for Ohioans between 12 and 25 years old to get COVID-19 vaccine

state and local government workers could be required to get vaccinated.
state and local government workers could be required to get vaccinated.(WITN News)
Published: Sep. 23, 2021 at 11:47 AM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - The governor called an address on Thursday to introduce additional incentives meant to encourage individuals, specifically for younger Ohioans, to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Gov. Mike DeWine, joined by Ohio Department of Health director Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff, said up to $1 million in scholarships is being offered in the “Vax to School” lottery.

  • Total of 5 (FIVE) $100,000 scholarships
  • Total of 50 (FIFTY) $10,000 scholarships

“Keeping our children in school, in person, is a top priority for our state, a top priority for our parents,” the governor said during Thursday’s briefing.

Ohioans between the ages of 12 and 25 years old are eligible to enter for the scholarship prizes.

The governor said the 12- to 25-year-old age range was selected because the specific group has the “most room to improve” when it comes to COVID-19 vaccination rates.

“Vaccinations remain our ticket out of this pandemic,” Gov. DeWine added.

Twenty-five years old was selected as the oldest age for eligibility so that non-traditional college students or individuals pursuing post-graduate studies are accounted for, officials said.

Just like the first round of state-sponsored incentives, which included five $1 million drawings and four-year scholarship giveaways, the Vax to School campaign will be funded through existing federal coronavirus appropriations.

The push towards vaccinating younger individuals comes after news that the Pfizer formula is safe and effective in children who are at least 5 years old.

Ohio’s hospitals have also recently expressed concerns to Gov. DeWine about the increasing lack of available beds and more children needing medical attention due to the coronavirus. Dr. Vanderhoff called the current condition a “dangerous strain” on Ohio’s hospitals.

The Ohio Department of Health and state lottery agency are expected to release additional information regarding how to enter into the drawings within the next week.

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