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Washington's first vaccine lottery: How the state picks winners

Winners will have 72 hours from the time of notice to call lottery officials back and claim their prize or they will be disqualified from winning.

SEATTLE — Do you want to be a millionaire? Washington was expected to draw the first winner of the state’s “Shot of a Lifetime” COVID-19 vaccine lottery Tuesday.

There will be four weekly drawings for $250,000, and one lucky Washingtonian will win a $1 million grand prize.

Residents are automatically entered into the drawing if they have received at least one COVID-19 vaccination and are in the state Department of Health (DOH) vaccine database.

According to the Washington State Lottery, you must be in the Washington State Immunization Information System by 11:59 p.m. the Sunday before the drawing date to be included in that week’s lottery.

Here's how winners will be selected: Vaccinated residents in the state's database will be assigned a number by the DOH. Washington State Lottery officials will use a random number generator starting at 8 a.m. on the day of the drawing to come up with a list of potential winners. The list will then be forwarded to the DOH to match the number with the appropriate name.

RELATED: Some Washingtonians experiencing issues verifying COVID-19 vaccine records

The DOH will then forward the list to Washington State Lottery officials, who will begin contacting winners by phone or email, based on immunization records.

Winners will have 72 hours from the time of notice to call lottery officials back and claim their prize or they will be disqualified from winning. Unclaimed prizes from the first four drawings will be placed in the fifth and final drawing.

Five drawings will be held for vaccinated adults:

  • June 8
  • June 15
  • June 22
  • June 29
  • July 13

According to the Washington State Lottery website, the four $250,000 winners and the one $1 million prize winner will be contacted the day after each weekly drawing. Merchandise prize winners will be contacted up to two days after the drawing date.

Two drawings will be held for eligible residents ages 12-17 on June 13 and June 22.

The Washington State Lottery said the two drawings for minors will include 15 prizes of 100 Guaranteed Education Tuition (GET) units each. The total value of each GET prize is $12,200. Minors are not eligible for cash prizes.

In addition to the $250,000 prize, numbers were drawn to award a suite for 16 at a Mariners game, two sets of Seahawk tickets, including parking, 75 XBox game consoles, 5 Nintendo Switch games, 100 state parks Discover Passes, 20 day passes for State Parks, 20 fish and hunting licenses and 25 Alexa Echo Dots.

Lottery officials said the drawings will take place in a controlled room with auditors present.

Kristi Weeks, Washington Lottery Director of Legal Services, said winners should be contacted either late Tuesday or Wednesday.

Winners will be asked if they would like their identity disclosed in a press release. However, the Washington State Lottery said the list of winners will “be a matter of public record.”

"Once somebody is contacted either by email or telephone, they have 72 hours to get back to us, so the clock will be ticking," said Weeks.

She said if someone gets a call from an out-of-state number or from an email that does not look official, they should contact the lottery's headquarters at (360)-810-2888.

Residents must meet all eligibility requirements and agree to “Shot of a Lifetime” terms and conditions to win.

Click here to see more details from the Washington State Lottery.

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