Registration for Louisiana's $1M grand prize vaccine lottery begins Monday

Greg Hilburn
Lafayette Daily Advertiser
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards receives a COVID-19 vaccination on Feb. 9, 2021.

Registration for Louisiana's new COVID-19 lottery featuring a $1 million grand prize and more than $2 million in total cash prizes and college scholarships opens at noon Monday.

Gov. John Bel Edwards announced the lottery last week hoping to boost Louisiana's sagging vaccination rate.

Any Louisiana resident who has or will receive at least one dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines or the single-dose Johnson & Johnson jab is eligible for the prizes.

Registration for the lottery begins at noon Monday online at shotatamillion.com or by calling 1-877-356-1511.

The state will use federal COVID relief revenue to fund the vaccine lottery.

Beginning on July 14 there will be four weekly drawings for $100,000 cash prizes for adults 18 and older and $100,000 cash scholarships for youths 12-17. Drawings will be held on Wednesdays with winners announced on Friday during the first four weeks.

The $1 million grand prize cash drawing for adults will be held on Aug. 4 with the winner announced on Aug. 13, while five $100,000 drawings for college scholarships will be held for youths on Aug. 4.

Louisiana is ahead of only Mississippi in the percentage of population with at least one dose of the vaccine at 37.3% as of Saturday. Mississippi is last at 35.5%.

The overall U.S. COVID-19 vaccination rate is 53.4%.

Similar programs are proving effective in other states like Ohio, where Gov. Mike DeWine instituted the Vax-a-Million lottery earlier this spring.

The week after the Ohio lottery was announced rates rose by more than 50% in adults and more than 90% for young residents 16 and 17.

Edwards is hoping for the same reaction in Louisiana.

"We wanted to see how similar programs have performed in other states and quite frankly we've been impressed," Edwards said last week. "I would love to see Louisiana have that kind of increase."

Greg Hilburn covers state politics for the USA TODAY Network of Louisiana. Follow him on Twitter @GregHilburn1.