RIGA - The government at an extraordinary meeting on Friday approved the Health Ministry's proposal to organize a lottery for persons who have been vaccinated against Covid-19 in a bid to boost Latvia's lagging vaccination rate.
The bill on the vaccine lottery with a prize fund of EUR 720,000 will now be sent to the Saeima for adoption.
The lottery's total costs, with will be financed from the budget program Funds for Unforeseen Events, are estimated at EUR 1.218 million. EUR 299,995 will be allocated to Latvian Television for the production and broadcasting of the lottery program, a special IT system for the vaccine lottery will be developed for EUR 98,000, EUR 51,000 will be spent on the lottery's publicity campaign and EUR 49,000 on audit services.
The Health Ministry said that the vaccine lottery bill has been drafted to organize a short-term lottery for vaccinated persons as part of Latvia's Covid-19 vaccination campaign. Everyone who has received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine will be eligible for participation in the lottery.
The weekly vaccine lottery, which will be held for 12 weeks, will include various prizes and a final draw. Five monetary prizes worth EUR 2,500, EUR 5,000 and EUR 10,000 will be distributed in the weekly draws among five randomly chosen participants from each region of Latvia. The draws will be broadcast live on Latvian Television.
The weekly lottery will also offer 150 smaller prizes, each worth EUR 100, and five senior citizens aged 60 and older will receive a prize of EUR 1,000 each.
Five prizes worth EUR 15,000, EUR 25,00 and 100,000 will be distributed to five randomly picked persons from each region in the final draw of the vaccine lottery.
"The vaccine lottery is intended to reach out with the prize to unvaccinated persons who have been hesitant about the jab or have been postponing vaccination and to encourage them to make their choice in favor of vaccination as soon as possible, to build public confidence in the safety of vaccination by extensively promoting people's positive experience and the necessity for vaccination," the Health Ministry said.