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A social science experiment suggests $100 vaccination incentives can pay off. | Press "Enter" to skip to content

A social science experiment suggests $100 vaccination incentives can pay off.

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What’s the best way to persuade the millions of Americans to get their shots?

Reassuring public service announcements about the coronavirus vaccine’s safety and effectiveness have proliferated. But increasingly, people are realizing that it will take more than just information to sway the hesitant.

In recent randomized survey experiments by the U.C.L.A. Covid-19 Health and Politics Project, two seemingly strong incentives have emerged.

Roughly a third of the unvaccinated population said a cash payment would make them more likely to get a shot. This suggests that some governors may be on the right track; West Virginia’s governor, Jim Justice, for example, recently announced the state would give young people $100 bonds if they got an inoculation.

Similar increases in vaccine willingness emerged for those who were asked how they would feel if a shot meant they wouldn’t need to wear a mask or maintain social distance, compared with a group that was told they would still have to.


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