HOUSTON (CW39) $100 VACCINE INCENTIVE. Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo has announced a $100 incentive to get the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. The program runs though August 31st for those who get a single dose. No word on if folks don’t get a second dose however.
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo
No strings attached
You don’t need an appointment so just drive up! You don’t need proof of ID and you don’t have to an American citizen. Free rides are available to get vaccinated.
Where the money is coming from
$100 will be given per person, not per family. Each individual can claim the incentive. The funds are coming from the American Rescue Plan funds. Harris County is receiving $9M. $2.3M are coming from this fund.
When asked “Is there a moral dilemma for government to offer incentive? What’s the cost of a life?” Hidalgo responded “the benefits outweighs the cost.”
She says that research shows that we can reduce the number of infections in as little as four weeks if everyone does their part.
Local doctors say the increase in cases is being attributed to the unvaccinated. This is the worst level, fastest pace, and the highest degree of severity the county has faced since the beginning of the pandemic.
Texas has highest number of pediatric patients in the hospital
Doctors on scene say they have seen the highest number of pediatric patients in hospitals throughout the pandemic. All preventative. There are children who can’t get the vaccine—- “we have to protect them,” Hidalgo adds.
Masks in schools
Masks remain a most preventative measure and the order to wear them in schools is still in effect. Masks at school is still in effect for local districts.
Dr. Esmaeil Porsa – President and CEO – Harris Health System
“The pandemic of the unvaccinated”
Dr. Porsa gave the medical perspective that health staff across the county are now facing. He said that more than 98% of COVID-19 patients at Harris Health System are all UNVACCINATED. “It is the pandemic of the UNVACCINATED,” he says.
He says these unnecessary deaths are taking away vital resources for others who are extremely ill and who need care that is not COVID-19 related.
“It’s about individual responsibility.” he says. He continues to encourage everyone to get vaccinated, social distance.
This is the worst surged we have faced and it is growing fast among children who aren’t eligible for vaccination. “Anyone over 12 should get vaccinated,” he says.
Representative Al Green, (D–TX 9th District) since 2005
Representative Green encouraged everyone to get vaccinated. He also says there is a high number of unvaccinated people in our area. He emphasized that there are no strings attached with getting the first shot to be vaccinated and stands behind the $100 offer to those who choose to get the shot.
The Delta variant of COVID-19 has spread quickly across the county, putting a strain on the hospital system and is disproportionately impacting unvaccinated people. More than 98% of people currently in the hospitalized for COVID-19 in the Harris Health System are unvaccinated.