Governor names news Health Department Director, announces vaccine incentive program

Donald Kauerauf

Governor Mike Parson introduces the new Director of Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services.  Donald Kauereauf will fill the role, coming from the Illinois Department of Public Health.  He also worked in emergency management in Illinois.

Kauerauf says Missouri’s main priority must be addressing COVID-19.

"People need to get vaccinated.  It's a clear answer.  People need to get vaccinated.  If you don't understand the vaccine or if you need additional information, seek your medical provider, seek your health authority.  They can give you the answers to get vaccinated."  

That’s the same message Parson stressed as he unveiled a new vaccine incentive program.  He says Missourians should shut out the clutter and talk to those they trust.  

"One of the best ways we can move the needle is by having trusted community voices relaying complete and fact-based information to those who you look up to."  

The new Missouri VIP program offers a couple different incentives.  Local health departments will get $25 to give out to individuals.  But every Missourian who gets or has already received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine will be eligible to win $10,000.  Drawings will be held every week from August 13 to October 80.  160 winners over 18 years of age will be drawn each week, along with 20 people between the ages of 12-17, who will win a $10,000 education savings account.  That means a total of 900 Missourians will be winners, with $9 million in prizes. 

You can sign up for the drawings online at