Best Of 2022

Best COVID-19 Silver Lining

Getting people in Ohio — or anywhere — to procure their COVID-19 vaccines proved to be difficult once the initial excitement wore off about a month after their full availability last March. So Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine had a plan: launch a Vax-a-Million promotion with the Ohio Lottery to incentivize wider vaccine adoption in Ohio. All Ohioans who had received at least one vaccination dose were eligible for Vax-a-Million, which rewarded five adult winners with $1 million each. In addition, five vaccinated Ohio residents ages 12-17 each would win a full-ride, four-year scholarship to any public college or university within the state. Greater Cincinnati residents found the promotion worthwhile, with two locals winning $1 million each and a youth nabbing a scholarship package. Ohio was the first state in the nation to implement such an activity; other states, including Kentucky, soon created their own vaccination incentives.