The lottery organized by the Puerto Rico Health Department gave the winners of three of the five prizes to adolescents aged 13 and 14, who were vaccinated on July 8, 9 and 10.
Two of the 13-year-olds won the 50,000 lotteries and the 14-year-old won the 25,000 lottery, in the drawing broadcast live via Facebook Live from the account of Health Secretary Carlos Mellado.
The 100,000 prize was won by a person who got vaccinated at the Pneumology Institute, they announced in the transmission.
The Health Department’s lottery motivated 23,581 people to get vaccinated in just three days. “We achieved our goal,” Mellado said last Monday.
“It’s good news. Many people responded to the call. The strategy to push for vaccination was effective. Thousands of people put their arm to face COVID-19 and help us in the process of reaching the immunity goal,” he said.
He also thanked the health personnel and providers for their work; in addition to the Department of Health staff for their work in logistics and data entry into the system.
The “VacunarTE Paga” initiative, the lottery implemented by the Treasury Department with the objective of reaching herd immunity faster on the island, raffled a grand prize of 100,000, two prizes of 50,000 and two of 25,000.
Mellado pointed out that Puerto Rico has administered more than 3.7 million doses. “According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). With at least one dose, we have reached 74.5% of the eligible population, while 64.6% with the series of completed doses,” he explained.
However, he urged citizens not to let their guard down because the data is based on those over 12 years of age who are eligible for the vaccine: “We cannot yet vaccinate children under 12 years of age because there are not enough studies for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to approve it and that it is safe. Remember that the vaccine is not 100 percent effective, there is a margin and if you have not had the second dose the risk is higher.”
The funds allocated by the Treasury Department for the vaccination lottery came out of the so-called American Rescue Plan 2021, presented last June 8 by the governor of Puerto Rico, Pedro Pierluisi, to put the island on the road to post-COVID-19 recovery.
The Department of Health is expected to announce new draws soon.