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West Virginia sees increase in vaccination rate; ‘Do it for Babydog’ sweepstakes’ role in it all

Published: Aug. 6, 2021 at 5:42 PM EDT
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NORTH CENTRAL, W.Va (WDTV) - During Governor Jim Justice’s covid briefing Friday morning, he announced that the vaccine rate has increased recently.

“Vaccinations are way up, we have given out 3000 of these doses since last Wednesday,” he said. “That’s really good.”

The governor stated a trend that is being seen across the country. The vaccination rate has gone up, but the question is why?

5 News asked the governor during his briefing, and he said he believes it is due to multiple incentives happening across the state, including the vaccination sweepstakes known as ‘Do It for Babydog.’

“All of a sudden they (state residents) move forward and get vaccinated; that’s great stuff,” Governor Justice said.

From the winners of the lottery in the North Central region, most of them told 5 News that they were vaccinated before the sweepstakes was in place, so whether the over 375,000 people chose to get vaccinated because of this incentive, the answer to that isn’t clear.

Which leads to the delta variant as a next possible answer for the increase in vaccinations. An increase in cases across the state is being seen, and many are being identified as variant cases. Dr. Clay Marsh, the states COVID-19 Czar, said that could also lead to an increase in vaccinations

“Anybody who’s not vaccinated right now is really at a very high risk of having a potential severe outcome for becoming infected,” he said.

The governor also stated that it will be more clear once the lottery ends to see how much of a role it played in increasing vaccinations across the state.

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