By WCCO-TV Staff

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Gov. Tim Walz announced Sunday evening the extension of the $100 vaccine reward initiative.

The program, which initially was set to end on Aug. 15, will be extended through Aug. 22. Under the program, Minnesotans 12 and older who got their first dose of the vaccine from July 30 to Aug. 22 qualify for a $100 Visa gift card.

Walz said that more than 55,000 Minnesotans have submitted reward requests, and the state’s weekly vaccination rate increased 129% compared to last month.

“With the Delta variant pushing cases up across the country, including right here in Minnesota, we’ve entered a new phase in the battle against COVID-19. The vaccines are the way we fight back against the virus,” Walz said. “Get your first dose today and get $100. Simple as that.”

Walz initially authorized $2.5 million of American Rescue Plan funding to go towards the program, but has since requested an additional $13.8 million to make sure the funding met the growing demand.

Minnesota currently leads the Midwest in the percentage of total residents fully vaccinated. According to the Minnesota Department of Health, 54.6% of the state’s population had completed the series.

To request your $100 Visa gift card, click here.