Milwaukee Health Department turns to incentivizing vaccines with rewards as one of main strategies

NOW: Milwaukee Health Department turns to incentivizing vaccines with rewards as one of main strategies

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Brewers fans were able to score free tickets if they received their vaccine outside the stadium Wednesday, May 27.

They could then walk straight to the game.

“I was already planning on taking a little vacation from work today, so I figured it was a perfect opportunity to get the vaccine and get some free tickets in the bargain,” Dan Gates said.

The Brewers' partnership with the Milwaukee Health Department resulted in more than 150 vaccinations in two days.

The Milwaukee Health Department announced Wednesday, they will offer free Summerfest tickets during a vaccine clinic at the festival parking area June 5 and 6. That will also mark the first drive-thru clinic Milwaukee has offered.

“We saw lots of drive-thru options in Florida, Texas and other places," Milwaukee Health Commissioner Kirsten Johnson said. "But knowing that we were in the dead of winter in Wisconsin, drive-thru was not an option. People have lots of layers, getting out of a car."

There will be many smaller pop-up vaccination sites and incentives. The city is even trying to offer up free axe throwing and shuffleboard in partnership with the NorthSouth Club.

“If that’s your thing, if you like to throw axes or play shuffleboard, here’s your chance to have that happen and get your shot as well,” Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said during a virtual press conference.

Johnson said they change strategy depending on what population they need to vaccinate. Appointments at mass vaccination sites are dwindling, and the Wisconsin Center is operating as a clinic for the last time Friday.

“We know that a large percentage of older adults in Milwaukee are vaccinated, so now we’re really trying to focus in on younger adults," Johnson said. "So people in the 20-30 range.”

The Milwaukee Health Department said they will keep changing their vaccine plans to try and reach herd immunity as soon as possible. If incentives stop working, they are considering a door-to-door strategy.

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