Jail Health Services extends vaccine benefit program

Employees at Jail Health Services, Public Health — Seattle & King County, are poised to continue a successful incentive program that encourages people in custody to get vaccinated.

The relaunched vaccine benefit program is set to go live Thursday, May 19. It is happening thanks to a new $30,000 grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The money will provide a $50 commissary credit to patients at the jail whenever they are eligible and elect to receive a vaccination, whether it is for their primary vaccination series or a booster dose.

“The COVID-19 Vaccine Incentive Team has done fantastic work to research patient hesitancy and launch a vaccine incentive program that is achieving successful results,” Jail Health Deputy Director Angie Hosking said. “The pilot of this program finished in March and resulted in 246 additional patients receiving their first or second dose. This team helped us experience a 153% increase in vaccinations administered compared to the prior month! We’re very proud to serve with these staff and are inspired by their efforts to improve patient outcomes.”

As soon as they obtained supplies last year, medical staff at the King County Correctional Facility and the Maleng Regional Justice Center have regularly offered vaccine doses to people in custody, starting during the intake process. However, many declined to get vaccinated. Jail Health leadership commended the Vaccine Incentive Team for collecting feedback to design the new incentive program in a way that meets real needs of the jail population. During the pilot program, 70% of participants said they were motivated by the incentives.

The Project Team: Becca Cole, Tess Koslosky, Nancy Carpio, and Chris Rampaul. The Vaccine Administration Team (most pictured below): CNAs Catherine Wamai and Syreeta Miller; and RNs Ceciliah Wanjiru, Rebecca Heaton, Kelsey Tran, Beatrice Igeria, and Tami Nesler. Additional Supporters: Nurse Supervisors Susie Densmore, Lio Saephanh, and Christopher Salatka. Click the images below for a larger view.