This past Friday, it was announced that California will be offering more COVID-19 vaccine incentives, which include $50 per person that is under Medicaid and choose to get vaccinated. This money comes from a new $350 million plan that aims to get more Medicaid recipients vaccinated as the delta variant of COVID-19 is causing a huge surge in California.
Earlier this year, Governor Newsom and his administration distributed more than $116.5 million in incentives to get more people to get inoculated. Some of those incentives included $1.5 million each for 10 people, $50,000 payments for 30 people who received the COVID-19 vaccine. Gift cards for certain stores and free amusement park tickets were also offered earlier this year.
76% of residents 12 and older have received at least one dose of the vaccine in California. That makes California one of the states with the highest vaccination rates. Only 45% of Medicaid patients have been inoculated against COVID-19. The Medicaid program in California is the largest in the country with over 13.8 million patients.
Medicaid Director, Jacey Cooper said in a statement
“We’re working extremely hard to improve vaccination rates, but we believe we can do better, and must do better, to prevent further disparities in COVID-19 infection and death among persons served by (Medicaid).”
The incentives that were announced on Friday will only be eligible to approximately 11.7 million people who get their health insurance from private companies. Those private companies will then be paid by the state.
The state is offering $250 million in incentives to those private companies to increase their vaccination rate. California also set aside $100 million for incentive payments to people. Those payments can not exceed $50 per person and it is most likely that these payments will come in form of grocery store gift cards.