This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WJW) — There have been approximately 1 million entries to the Ohio Vax-a-Million lottery, according to state officials.

The Ohio Lottery and the Ohio Department of Health also report that preliminary data shows vaccination rates continue to grow.

Governor DeWine’s announcement of Ohio Vax-a-Million one week ago today was exactly what we needed to reinvigorate interest in receiving COVID-19 vaccines,” Ohio Department of Health Director Stephanie McCloud said in a press release Wednesday. “After the announcement, our preliminary data shows that more than 113,000 Ohioans have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccines.”

Officials say there has been a 53% increase in vaccinations from the time period before the lottery announcement.

“We are seeing increasing numbers in all age groups, except those 80 and older, who are highly vaccinated already,” said McCloud. “Although the rate among that group is decreasing, it is doing so at a less rapid pace, demonstrating some positive impact even in that group.”

The Vax-a-million contest is part of the state incentive program to encourage people to get vaccinated. To enter for a chance to win $1 million or a full ride to any Ohio state college, you need to:

  • Get vaccinated. The state will verify whether you’ve had your first shot by the time of the drawing.
  • Be an Ohio resident
  • Be over the age of 12
  • Opt-in on the website or by making a call

Sign-ups for the first Ohio Vax-a-million drawing will continue until May 23. The first winner will be drawn on May 24 and announced on May 26.

The website received 25 million page views on the first day of registration Tuesday, according to the Ohio Department of Health. The phone line, 1-833-4-ASK-ODH, received more than 60,000 calls. The phone is open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

For security purposes, the official number of entries will not be released until Monday after the draw period closes, ODH says.