More than 250 clinics across Massachusetts are offering $75 gift cards to people who get COVID-19 vaccines or boosters, officials said.
“This fall, we’re co-hosting family-friendly COVID vaccination clinics in communities across MA,” the state Department of Public Health tweeted Monday. “No appointment needed! Find one near you at mass.gov/GetBoosted.”
This fall, we’re co-hosting family-friendly COVID vaccination clinics in communities across MA. No appointment needed! Find one near you at https://t.co/A1hq7sMipU pic.twitter.com/DAwZfnd7O3— Mass. Public Health (@MassDPH) November 28, 2022
The state’s website, mass.gov, says $75 gift cards will be offered “to Massachusetts residents (adult or child) who get vaccinated (first dose, second dose, or booster) at any of the special clinics” listed on the site. All told, there’s 253 of them, and they can be found here.
Gift cards will be available through December 31, while supplies last.
“All members of a family, including children, can receive gift cards. For children or teens under 18 years old, an accompanying adult must be present to receive the gift card(s),” the site states. “Children ages 6 months to 4 years can get the COVID-19 vaccine, and anyone age 5 years and older can get a COVID-19 vaccination or updated booster at these clinics, unless otherwise noted” by the clinics.
While the shots are free with no health insurance or ID required, some clinics “may encourage pre-registration,” the site states.
On Nov. 23, Massachusetts reported 4,425 new confirmed coronavirus cases and 64 deaths in the past six days. The Department of Public Health said that 114,174 vaccinations, including booster shots, had been administered in a week.
Some 6.5 million Massachusetts residents had received at least one vaccine dose as of Nov. 21, according to state data. The virus has killed 20,833 people in Massachusetts since the start of the pandemic, the data showed Tuesday afternoon.
Multiple COVID-19 variants are vying to succeed Omicron BA.5 as the leading cause of COVID-19 cases in the United States and the world, the Globe reported in October, and experts fear one or more could drive a new surge in the coming months.
Two particular strains have received an increased level of attention recently: BQ.1 and XBB.
BQ.1 and its sublineage BQ.1.1 are “present at significant levels in Europe,” and will likely “contribute to a further increase in cases” there in the coming weeks to months, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control said last month.
Experts have raised alarms about a possible replay of last year when the Omicron variant came seemingly out of nowhere toward the end of the year, causing tens of millions of infections and leading to some of the highest death rates of the pandemic.
Material from prior Globe stories was used in this report.
Travis Andersen can be reached at email@example.com.