FORT WORTH, Texas – Tarrant County leads North Texas in COVID-19 hospitalizations. This week, the problem became more alarming.
Now the county judge is revisiting the idea of vaccine incentives.
Tarrant County has seen nearly 6,700 new cases of COVID-19 in a four-day period. This is more than the months of May and June combined.
The county also reports the highest daily number of hospitalizations in North Texas.
The infusion center set up in Fort Worth to administer antibodies as treatment and relieve the burden on hospitals announced it is now accepting outpatients. Previously, the center only requested appointments through referrals from doctors.
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County Judge Glen Whitley believes a cash incentive for vaccines is now a necessary step, given the altering delta variant. But he says there are factors to consider first.
“The question I keep going through in my mind is if we don’t find a way to compensate those people who have already intensified and gotten their vaccines as well, we will end up rewarding people for procrastination,” he said.
MONTH: Tarrant County Revisits Cash Incentives to Increase COVID-19 Vaccination Rates
Whitley says he has been in talks with Harris County leaders who have seen the vaccination rate double since he began offering his residents a cash incentive, which now stands at $ 100.
Judge Whitley is proposing $ 50, but quickly points out that other members of the commission have not yet considered the idea. He expects the discussion to move forward on Tuesday.
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“One of the things I hope we can discuss on Tuesday is maybe see if we can get some cities to partner with us. Maybe we pay $ 25 and they pay $ 25,” he said. “We have five members in court and it is possible that all five of us have different opinions not only on the amount, but also on how to pay it. If we pay those people who have already been vaccinated or find a way to include- those in the process “.