Ohio vaccine lottery: Who is eligible for the weekly $1 million, scholarship prizes — and what do they need to do?


OHIO (WJW) — Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine Wednesday unrolled incentives including a weekly $1 million lottery prize and drawings for college scholarships to encourage people to get vaccinated. 

Ohio Gov. Dewine defends vaccine lottery idea

With three weeks to go before most coronavirus health orders in Ohio lift June 2, DeWine’s bid is designed to prevent unnecessary loss of life.

Two weeks from tonight on May 26th, we will announce a winner of a separate drawing for adults who have received at least their first dose of the vaccine. This announcement will occur each Wednesday for five weeks, and the winner each Wednesday will receive one million dollars.

— Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) May 12, 2021

“I know that some may say, ‘DeWine, you’re crazy! This million-dollar drawing idea of yours is a waste of money,’” he said. But the real waste, when the vaccine is now readily available, “is a life lost to COVID-19,” the governor said during his primetime address.

‘It’s time to end the health orders’: Ohio to lift mask mandate on June 2

So who can be part of the drawings? Here’s what we know so far:

Who is eligible for the lottery drawings?

Ohioans aged 18 and older who have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine by the date of the respective drawing will be entered into the drawing. There will be five drawings for $1 million each.

When will the lottery drawings take place?

A total of five weekly drawings for each $1 million prize will take place, with the first winners being announced on May 26th. 

How do you register for the lottery drawings?

No need to register. The pool of names for the drawing will come from the Ohio Secretary of State’s voter registration database. DeWine also said there will be a website created for people to sign up for the drawings.

Who is eligible for the scholarships?

Ohioans under the age of 18 who are eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine will be entered into a drawing for a four-year full scholarship to any of Ohio’s state colleges and universities. The prize includes full tuition, room and board.

How do you register for the scholarship drawings?

On May 18, an electronic portal will be opened up for young people who have been vaccinated so they can register.

When will the scholarship drawings take place?

A total of five weekly drawings will take place, with the first winners being announced on May 26th.

How will the drawings be funded?

The drawings will be administered by the Ohio Department of Health, with technical assistance from the Ohio Lottery Commission, and will be funded through existing allocations to the Ohio Department of Health of unexpended coronavirus relief funds.

The governor’s office said more details of how the lottery will work will be released next week.



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