A nurse prepares to give the first COVID-19 vaccine to be distributed in Edmonton on Tuesday, December 15, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

A nurse prepares to give the first COVID-19 vaccine to be distributed in Edmonton on Tuesday, December 15, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Alberta to pay out $15 million to entice those hesitant to get the COVID-19 vaccine

Promotion ends Thursday night

EDMONTON — Alberta is on track to spend more than $15 million to directly pay vaccine-hesitant residents to get the COVID-19 shot.

The province says that more than 152,000 Albertans have signed up to receive the $100 preloaded debit card in return for getting the vaccine.

The promotion ends Thursday night.

Premier Jason Kenney introduced the debit card in early September to entice more vaccine-hesitant Albertans to sign on and boost the province’s lagging vaccination numbers.

The card, along with other measures such as a modified vaccine passport, have lifted Alberta’s numbers closer to national averages.

Kenney and Health Minister Jason Copping were set to hold a news conference later Tuesday to update the COVID-19 situation, which has seen high case numbers push health capacity to the limit in recent weeks.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 12, 2021.

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