When Christine Duval went to get her coronavirus vaccine, she probably expected to leave with a sore arm and the knowledge that she was better protecting herself and others around her from the virus as a result.
But she got a whole lot more than that – $2 million in fact – after she participated and won one of Michigan’s sweepstakes that provided a financial incentive for people to get vaccinated. Not too shabby.
The grand prize winner told NPR she and her family would put the money toward her children’s educations, remodeling their home and donating money to mental health services in the community.
The money “will help us achieve all of our dreams,” she said.
Duval was not the only person to rake it in from getting the vaccine. Michigan also offered the chance to win a $1 million prize and daily drawings of $50,000 for adults who got at least one shot throughout July. There were also chances to win tuition money for kids aged 12 to 17 who got the vaccine.
Joining the announcement of Monday’s winner, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer said the sweepstakes helped ensure there wasn’t a midsummer dip in vaccination rates.
Whitmer noted that at least 65 per cent of people in the state aged 16 and older have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
“That’s progress. That’s lives saved. That’s people at home and out of the hospital,” the governor said.
Meanwhile, in May, the governor of Ohio Mike DeWine ran a jab lottery for five weeks, in which those who received their first jab had their names put in a figurative hat for the chance to win $1 million.
West Virginia offered $100 saving bonds to people between the ages of 16 and 35 and New Jersey dished out free beers. New York offered free MetroCards for anyone who gets a shot at a subway vaccination site, and Krispy Kreme even gave out free doughnuts to vaccinated people.