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North Carolina to give away $25 cash cards as incentive to get COVID-19 vaccine

Select vaccine sites in Mecklenburg and Rowan counties will offer $25 summer cash cards for getting their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — North Carolina health officials have found a new way to motivate more people to get the COVID-19 vaccine: Cash cards. 

From May 26 through June 8, select vaccine sites in Mecklenburg and Rowan counties will give patients a $25 cash card for getting their first dose of the vaccine. People who drive patients to receive their first shot will also receive the $25 gift card. The promotion is also running in Guilford and Rockingham counties. 

"Vaccines are the key to emerging from this pandemic and we must continue to do all that we can to get shots into arms," said Gov. Roy Cooper. "I greatly appreciate the innovative work being done to encourage more people to get vaccinated."

For people who drive others to their vaccination appointment, it's not just a one-time bonus. According to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, there is no limit on the number of times someone can drive people to a vaccination appointment; however, a driver will only receive one card per visit. 

"You're getting paid to stay safe and to help other people," said Dr. Arin Piramzadian, with StarMed Healthcare. "We're hoping something like these initiatives are a fun way of giving them an incentive to getting your vaccine."

Here's a list of participating StarMed locations in North Carolina: 

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According to the latest DHHS data, 52.2% of adults in North Carolina have received at least one dose of the vaccine, while 47.4% of adults are considered fully vaccinated. So far, the state has seen 12,958 deaths related to the virus. 

RELATED: New US COVID-19 cases fall to lowest levels in 11 months

Mecklenburg County health officials reported 40% of the population is fully vaccinated, compared to just 20.4% in Rowan County.

"We have a strong supply of COVID-19 vaccines, and we want to make it as easy as possible for people to get their free COVID-19 vaccine," said NCDHHS Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, M.D. "We also want to support those who have made the effort to help family members, friends and neighbors get vaccinated."

RELATED: Dr. Fauci: Booster COVID vaccines may depend on variants

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