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Ohio Announces First $1 million Vax-A-Million Lottery Winner

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AP photo
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Gov. Mike DeWine introduced the incentive program May 12 as a way of boosting participation in the state’s flagging vaccination efforts.

A woman from Southwest Ohio is the first winner of the state's $1 million Vax-a-Million vaccination incentive prize. The state also says a Dayton-area teen is the first winner of the program’s full-ride college scholarship.

Abbigail Bugenske of Silverton near Cincinnati was the $1 million winner, while Joseph Costello of Englewood near Dayton was the scholarship winner. The names were announced Wednesday night at the end of the Ohio Lottery’s Cash Explosion TV show.

Gov. Mike DeWine introduced the incentive program May 12 as a way of boosting participation in the state’s flagging vaccination efforts. More than 2.7 million adults signed up for the $1 million prize and more than 104,000 children ages 12 to 17 entered the drawing for the college scholarship.

The number of people in Ohio age 16 and older who received their initial COVID-19 vaccine jumped 33% in the week after the state announced its million-dollar incentive lottery, according to an Associated Press analysis.