HRDC Vaccination Clinic

Liesl Pessl, a family nurse practitioner with CHP, gives a shot of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine on April 1, 2021, at the Warming Center.

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For at least one Bozeman resident, waiting to get vaccinated against COVID-19 is paying off.

The city ended its vaccine incentive program Monday, which allowed those vaccinated before Sept. 15 to enter a raffle to win $1,000 and people vaccinated between that date and Nov. 15 to enter into a similar raffle and claim a $25 gift card.

According to the city, just 16 Bozeman residents vaccinated in the last two months claimed their $25 and entered the raffle. Just over 200 people vaccinated prior to Sept. 15 entered that raffle.

All in all, the program cost the city about $2,400, including the cost of the gift cards and each raffle prize. The money came from Bozeman’s American Rescue Plan Act allocation.

The winners for each raffle were drawn Wednesday afternoon.

When announcing the program in September, City Manager Jeff Mihelich said the city wanted to reward residents who got a COVID-19 vaccine.

“We’re giving some people a monetary incentive to do that, and hopefully people might think, ‘Hm, I can make $1,025, might be worthwhile,'” Mihelich said.

The city chose not to extend the program in light of the Pfizer vaccine being approved in late October for use for children as young as 5.

COVID-19 has now killed over 760,000 Americans and can lead to lasting health issues.

Vaccines are readily available in Bozeman and Gallatin County. More information for vaccines is on the health department’s website, healthygallatin.org or on vaccinefinder.org.

According to the Gallatin City-County Health Department there are 110,900 people in the county eligible for the vaccine. Of those, 67% had gotten at least one dose of the vaccine by Nov. 15, and 57% have now gotten two doses.

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Nora Shelly can be reached at nshelly@dailychronicle.com or 406-582-2607.

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