Dimitrijevic Offers Plan to Fight COVID-19
Mayoral candidate wants free at-home tests and $100 incentive to get vaccine and booster.
Alderwoman and mayoral candidate Marina Dimitrijevic has a plan she believes would slow the spread of COVID-19.
She’s calling on the Milwaukee Health Department to offer free at-home COVID-19 tests available for pickup at each of the city’s 13 libraries. The alderwoman, the chair of the Public Safety & Health Committee, will also introduce legislation to offer a $100 incentive to receive a primary or booster shot of the vaccine.
The two initiatives would dramatically expand the city’s direct COVID-19 mitigation efforts. The city currently staffs three testing and vaccine clinics out of the Northwest Health Center, 7630 W. Mill Rd., the Southside Health Center, 1639 S. 23rd St. and the former emissions testing center at 2401 W. St. Paul Ave.
Making at-home tests available for residents, and distributing them via the city’s libraries, would expand the availability of testing both in quantity and accessibility.
The idea isn’t without precedent, Baltimore rolled out a similar giveaway earlier this week. President Joe Biden also announced an initiative Tuesday to provide up to 500 million at-home tests for free by mail via an online portal. That offering is expected to happen in January.
The vaccination incentive would restore an earlier incentive, while also quadrupling the size of the cash offer and expanding the eligible list of participants. MHD last ran a $25 incentive in October for eligible Milwaukee residents to get the second shot in the primary dose series. It was operated with $1,000 in U.S. Bank same-as-cash gift cards. Dimitrijevic’s plan would offer $100 to anyone getting their first, second or booster dose. The city, in September, had a $100 incentive program after a similar state program expired. Milwaukee Public Schools and other entities have also offered incentives.
“The rapid spread of COVID-19 in Milwaukee County, driven largely by the new omicron variant, is deeply concerning. But thankfully, we now have the tools we need to combat this virus and keep schools and businesses open,” said Dimitrijevic.
The alderwoman has been the council’s most vocal champion of COVID-19 mitigation measures. She led the adoption of a mask mandate in 2020, unsuccessfully sought to get it reinstated in 2021 and has steadfastly advocated vaccination.
“None of us wanted to be thinking about COVID-19 for yet another holiday season, but if we take bold action now we can prevent the worst outcomes and keep schools and businesses open and thriving,” said the alderwoman.
According to Wisconsin Department of Health Services data, only 52.6% of all Milwaukee residents have received at least one dose of the vaccine and 48.3% have received a full dose course. Statewide, 61.5% of Wisconsin residents have received at least one dose.
- 10 Health Centers Offering COVID-19 Tests - Matt Martinez - Jan 24th, 2022
- City of Milwaukee COVID-19 Sites Closed on Tuesday, January 25 - City of Milwaukee Health Department - Jan 24th, 2022
- City Hall: Mask Mandate Anticipated To Go Into Effect Saturday - Jeramey Jannene - Jan 20th, 2022
- MTEA Statement on Passage of Mask Requirement by Milwaukee Common Council - Milwaukee Teachers’ Education Association - Jan 18th, 2022
- City of Milwaukee Weekly COVID-19 Update - City of Milwaukee Health Department - Jan 14th, 2022
- DHS Now Auto-Importing Positive COVID-19 Test Results - Wisconsin Department of Health Services - Jan 14th, 2022
- National Guard Deploying to Hospitals, Nursing Homes - Jeramey Jannene - Jan 13th, 2022
- City Moving Toward Cash Vaccination Incentives, Free Rapid Tests - Jeramey Jannene - Jan 13th, 2022
- MKE County: COVID-19 Deaths Rising in Milwaukee - Graham Kilmer - Jan 11th, 2022
- Gov. Evers and DHS Announce Rate Increase to Help Support Healthcare Workforce in the Midst of COVID-19 Case Surge - Gov. Tony Evers - Jan 11th, 2022
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