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How will NC vaccine lottery winners be contacted?

What if you're a winner?! How to make sure NCDHHS has your contact information and what to do if it's incorrect - at the bottom of this article.

NORTH CAROLINA, USA — Who wants to be a millionaire? If you've been vaccinated in North Carolina, you've got that chance. 

Four adults who've gotten at least one COVID-19 shot will win $1 million each in the state's vaccine lottery. Four kids between the ages of 12 and 17 will win $125,000 each to put toward college. Winners will be announced on the SummerVaxCash.com website.

The first of four drawings will happen Wednesday, June 23. Here's everything you need to know about the vaccine lottery. 

WHEN ARE THE DRAWINGS? 

  • Wednesday, June 23, 2021
  • Wednesday, July 7, 2021
  • Wednesday, July 21, 2021
  • Wednesday, August 4, 2021

HOW DO I ENTER? 

If you've already been vaccinated and your information is in North Carolina's COVID Vaccine Management System, you automatically get one entry per drawing. Those who got vaccinated on or after June 10 (when the lottery was announced) will receive two entries. A record of at least one dose of the vaccine must be documented by a vaccine provider by midnight on the Sunday prior to the drawing. 

HOW DOES THE DRAWING WORK? 

NCDHHS will conduct a random number generator drawing, according to a report from WCNC. NCDHHS will then determine the individual that corresponds to the number that is drawn. 

Audio and visual recordings of the random number generator drawing will be made available. However, NCDHHS said they must then go through a lengthy process of verifying that the person meets the eligibility requirements for the drawing, and then contact the person to get their consent to receive funds and release their identity. This may take several days. No identifying details will be revealed before then. 

The $4 Million Summer Cash and Summer Cash 4 College drawings will use federal Coronavirus Relief Funds to fund the program. The drawings will be supported by the North Carolina State Lottery Director. The scholarship funds will be managed by the North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority. 

AM I ELIGIBLE TO WIN? 

To be eligible, you must:

  • Live in North Carolina. U.S. citizenship is not required. 
  • A person is a North Carolina Resident if, at the time of the vaccination, he or she lives in North Carolina. This includes people living in North Carolina homes, rental units or rooms, vacation housing, dormitories, migrant worker camps, congregate living facilities, and military bases. This also includes homeless people in North Carolina and people using vehicles in North Carolina as homes. People who traveled to North Carolina from other states or countries for the purpose of being vaccinated are not eligible.
  • Be 12 or older.
  • Have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a site located in the state of North Carolina. 
  • UPDATE 06/23/21: DHHS is now able to access data for people who were vaccinated at locations operated by the Department of Defense. Therefore, these persons are entered for the drawing. "Thanks to our partners across the state, we are now able to include veterans vaccinated through the VA and American Indians vaccinated by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians," said NC Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, M.D. "Everyone can protect themselves and their community while also getting a chance to win a million dollars. It’s a win-win."

In addition, the governor, secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, NCDHHS employees and contractors with access to CVMS data, drawing program designers, 529 account managers, and immediate family of excluded individuals are not eligible to win. The full list can be found in official rules.

HOW WILL WINNERS BE CONTACTED? 

Winners will be called by a representative from the NCDHHS. Winners may also be emailed. They will have 48 hours to accept their prize. Only people who provided a phone number or email will be eligible to be selected as a winner.  

So, how do you know whether NCDHHS has your information to contact you? 

When you got vaccinated, you probably gave your vaccine provider your phone number and/or email address. 

If you provided an email address, you should have gotten an email inviting you to register on the COVID-19 Vaccine Portal. The email will come from nccvms@dhhs.nc.gov. 

The email subject will be: Welcome to the North Carolina COVID-19 Vaccine Portal 

The email contains a link to set up your password. Your COVID-19 Vaccine Portal USERNAME is listed in the email.

If you didn't get this email, you may need to update your contact information through your vaccine provider or the vaccine portal help desk. 

You can also try to request your password and username through the vaccine portal. 

Click here to submit a support ticket if you still need help. Click here to see the Vaccine Portal Help Desk. 

People who got their vaccine at a pharmacy will not show up on the NC Covid-19 Vaccine Portal because pharmacies work through the federal program. But the state says you WILL still be entered in the lottery. The best way to confirm your information is by calling the pharmacy to make sure they have the correct e-mail and phone number.

A note from the writer of this article: I never got the initial email from the nccvms@dhhs.nc.gov email. It turned out that my vaccine provider misspelled my email address. Therefore, I couldn't request a password change (since my email was wrong in the first place). Here are a couple of things you can try: 

  • Enter your vaccine recipient information into the vaccine portal help desk. You'll see a drop-down button where you can click on the specific issue you're having. It may be 'CVMS Access or Login Issue' or 'Request CVMS Data Correction.' Provide a note that your email address needs to be updated. 
  • Try doing the username recovery request to get your user ID sent to the proper email. 

You'll get an email from nccvms@dhhs.nc.gov telling you what your username associated with your new email ID is. Usernames for the vaccine portal are your email address followed by .covid19vaccine

For example: youremailaddress@gmail.com.covid19vaccine 

I was doing it wrong the first few times because I forgot to add the extra .covid19vaccine at the end. 

From there, you should be able to see your vaccine information in the portal, update any information, or change your password as needed. 

Related: Your top NC vaccine lottery questions, answered