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Newly vaccinated Wisconsin residents to get $100 gift cards

August 23, 2021 GMT

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin residents who get their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in the state between Aug. 20 and Labor Day will receive a $100 gift card, Gov. Tony Evers announced Monday.

The reward being offered just as students are returning to school is the latest incentive in Wisconsin designed to entice the unvaccinated to get inoculated. As of Monday, just over 50% of the state’s entire population and 61% of adults 18 and up were fully vaccinated, according to the state health department.

Many other states have offered similar programs to get more people vaccinated. Recently in Wisconsin, attendees at the state fair who got vaccinated received a free cream puff. More than 600 people took advantage of that promotion.

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The $100 Visa gift card will be available to anyone age 12 and up who gets their first shot during the 18-day eligibility window that closes on Sept. 6. To receive the gift card, those being vaccinated will need to fill out an application form available at 100.wisconsin.gov. The cards will be mailed up to six weeks later.

Cases of COVID-19, hospitalizations and deaths caused by the more contagious delta variant have spiked in Wisconsin and across the country in recent weeks.

Also on Monday, the state surpassed 6 million doses of vaccine delivered. Evers called it a “tremendous milestone” and reiterated that state data shows the unvaccinated are far more likely to be hospitalized or die from the virus than those who have been inoculated.

As of Monday, the seven-day average of new cases in Wisconsin was 1,290, the highest since late January before the vaccine was widely available. The 792 people hospitalized in Wisconsin as of Monday was up by 132 from the previous week and the highest since Jan. 21.