DeWine announced several incentives for Ohioans to get the COVID-19 vaccine as the state nears a near-full reopening
COLUMBUS, Ohio – All Ohio public health ordinances, except those for nursing homes, will be repealed on June 2nd, Governor Mike DeWine announced on Wednesday.
The move came during a surprise evening address in which the governor announced several incentives for Ohioans to get the COVID-19 vaccine as the state approaches near full reopening.
Ohioans 12 and older were incentivized for the first time after Pfizer’s vaccine was OK for an emergency from the CDC and FDA just hours before DeWine’s speech.
Here is a breakdown of the key announcements on Wednesday.
HEALTH ORDERS WILL BE COLLECTED SOON
The key takeaway from Wednesday is that the Ohio Department of Health will remove all pandemic health orders on June 2nd. excluding those for nursing homes and assisted living facilities.
He said the three week notice will give anyone who isn’t vaccinated the opportunity to get the one-time Johnson & Johnson vaccine or the first dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccines and be on their way to immunity.
“Everyone can now control their own health. Everyone can now control their own destiny,” DeWine said.
However, he warned that removing health orders does not mean the virus has been irradiated.
“Now, lifting those orders doesn’t mean the virus is gone. It doesn’t mean we are all safe. Each Ohio citizen will make their own decisions about mask wearing and social distancing – and when it is appropriate for them to do so is. ” Said DeWine.
He noted that those who are not vaccinated are still at risk as the variants are still out there and have been found to be even more contagious.
The governor cited a report from the Cleveland Clinic which found that of all COVID-19 patients in the hospital, 99.97% were unvaccinated.
He also made it clear that Ohio companies and schools have the ability to make their own decisions about how best to protect customers, employees and students. Nothing that would prevent these healthcare contracts from being canceled would not prevent a company from making its own demands.
RELATED: Million Dollar Decision: Governor Mike DeWine Announces The Cancellation of COVID-19 Health Orders In Ohio On June 2nd, As Well As Lucrative Vaccine Incentives
YOUNG OHIOANS GET THE SHOT
On Wednesday, U.S. health advisors endorsed the use of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine in children 12 years and older.
DeWine noted during his address that this age group can take their pictures as early as Thursday.
He explained that Ohio children’s hospitals and pediatricians are working with local groups to make the vaccine available to their young patients and the community.
DeWine went on to claim that more children are getting sick, citing a situation in Hamilton County where a quarter of the cases occur in young people and some are sick enough to be hospitalized.
“These vaccines for our children can’t come soon enough,” DeWine said.
RELATED: CDC Accepts U.S. Advisors Consent to Pfizer COVID shot for Children Age 12+
DeWine said it was important to get the state’s youngsters vaccinated. That’s why his team developed their own incentive for them.
On Wednesday May 26th, DeWine announced that its team will announce the winner of a drawing, including anyone under the age of 17 who has been vaccinated. This winner will receive a four-year full scholarship to a state university in Ohio. The scholarship will include tuition, room and board, and books, he said.
On May 18, an electronic portal will be opened for vaccinated adolescents to register for this drawing.
DeWine said the drawings would occur every Wednesday for five weeks in a row, randomly select a student each time to receive the scholarship.
RELATED: $ 1 Million and College Scholarships: DeWine Announces Incentives for Ohioans to Receive COVID-19 Vaccine
$ 1 MILLION DRAWING
On May 26, the state will announce the first winner of another drawing for adults who have received at least their first dose of the vaccine.
Each time, the winner takes home $ 1 million.
The drawing takes place every Wednesday for a period of five weeks.
The pool of names for the draw is derived from the Ohio Secretary of State’s voter registration database.
Also, DeWine said the state will create a website where people can sign up to sign up if they’re not in that database to make sure anyone who is vaccinated can be included.
The Ohio Department of Health is sponsoring the drawings, he said, and the Ohio Lottery will run them. The money will be taken from the existing coronavirus aid fund of the federal government.
You must be at least 18 years of age or older on the day of the drawing to be eligible. You must also be a resident of Ohio. To take home the prize, you must be vaccinated prior to the raffle.
DeWine said specfics will be announced in the coming days.
“I know some might say, DeWine, you’re crazy! That million dollar drawing idea of yours is a waste of money.” But really, the real waste at this point in the pandemic – when the vaccine is available to anyone who has it want – is a life lost to COVID-19, “DeWine said.
To learn more about Ohio’s vaccination effort, click here.