COVID vaccination campaign includes $100 gift cards, young Dayton influencer

Ohio’s Medicaid providers are offering $100 gift cards and collaborating with a young Dayton-area social media influencer to improve coronavirus vaccination rates, particularly among Medicaid patients under 18.

Ohio’s Medicaid providers — Aetna, Buckeye Health Plan, CareSource, Molina Healthcare, Paramount Advantage and UnitedHealthcare — announced this week they will again offer $100 gift cards to Ohio Medicaid patients who get their first shot. All Medicaid patients 5 years and older are eligible. The gift cards will be offered through June 30.

For more information on the gift card program and how to get a free round-trip ride to get vaccinated, visit or call member services at your Medicaid health plan. You can find the number on the back of your health care member ID card.

In another bid to improve child vaccination rates, Ohio’s Health Plans are partnering with young Dayton social media influencer Rylee Davis. The 11-year-old will serve as an ambassador in an effort to get Ohio Medicaid members vaccinated against COVID-19.

In an episode of The Rylee Show posted to Facebook in late January, Rylee talks about her top five reasons for getting vaccinated against COVID-19.

“Reason No. 1: I don’t want to get COVID, duh,” Rylee says in the video. She goes on to say she wants to avoid virtual school, among other reasons she chose to get the shot.

The Rylee Show has just under 1,000 followers on Facebook. In her latest episode, posted Thursday evening, Rylee spoke with Dayton pediatrician Dr. Alonzo Patterson III about kids and the COVID-19 vaccine.

According to a news release from the Ohio Association of Health Plans, their 2022 focus is to get Medicaid members under age 18, especially those in the 5 to 11 age group, vaccinated against COVID-19.

Recent statistics from the Ohio Department of Medicaid show that nearly 18% of all Ohio children ages 5 to 11 are fully vaccinated, compared to just over 7% of Ohio children ages 5 to 11 enrolled in Medicaid. There are over one million Ohio children enrolled in Medicaid.

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