As part of its ongoing effort to get more North Carolinians vaccinated and safely bring summer back, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services is offering $25 Summer Cash Cards at select vaccine sites to offset the time and transportation costs of getting vaccinated.
From May 26 through June 8, select vaccine sites will offer Summer Cash Cards in Mecklenburg, Guilford, Rowan and Rockingham counties. Anyone 18 and older who gets their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccination — or drives someone to their vaccination — will receive a $25 cash card after vaccination at a participating location while supplies last. Cards are for the first dose only for both the person being vaccinated and the driver.
"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 Governor Roy Cooper. "I greatly appreciate the innovative work being done to encourage more people to get vaccinated."
In addition to providing a $25 Summer Cash Card to those who get their first dose of vaccine, those who drive others will receive a $25 Summer Cash card each time they drive someone to an appointment at the completion of the vaccination. This helps offset the costs for those who help family, friends and neighbors find their spot for a vaccine and drive them to their shots. There is no limit on the amount of times someone can drive people to a vaccination appointment; however, a driver will only receive one card per visit.
"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."
The $25 Summer Cash card pilot is part of the state’s campaign to safely bring summer back by getting more people vaccinated. More than 235 organizations, agencies and businesses have signed on to our Bringing Summer Back campaign to promote COVID-19 vaccination in their communities. NCDHHS continues to explore a range of strategies to support people in getting vaccinated. The experience during the pilot program will help NCDHHS determine next steps with the $25 Summer Cash Card.
Across the state, businesses and organizations are using a range of strategies to support people in getting vaccinated. The North Carolina Zoo gave a free ticket to the zoo to people who got vaccinated at their vaccine event. Charlotte breweries teamed with health care providers to provide vaccines on site and gave a free drink to anyone who got vaccinated. North Carolina universities are offering chances to win a free meal plan or housing and Ottendorf Laboratories entered people who got vaccinated in a raffle to win a free car.
More than 50% of North Carolina adults have received at least one dose of the vaccine. However, those who are unvaccinated run a higher risk of severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19. They can protect themselves by getting fully vaccinated and wearing masks until they do.
State Employees’ Credit Union is providing these cash cards and waiving the card production fees.
"We encourage SECU employees, members and eligible North Carolinians to get vaccinated to protect one another from COVID-19." said SECU CEO Mike J. Lord. " We are pleased to support Governor Cooper and the NC Department of Health and Human Services on this initiative to test potential options for increasing widespread immunity."
The $25 Summer Cash Card program is available in a limited number of vaccination sites in Mecklenburg, Guilford, Rowan and Rockingham counties. Those interested in the program can visit YourSpotYourShot.nc.gov or call 888-675-4567 to find a participating location.