RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – The work is continuing to be put in to get more people vaccinated in our state’s prison system. North Carolina is now offering a new round of incentives for prisoners, and for the first time, prison workers will get a bonus if they get the COVID-19 shot.

Any prisoner who gets vaccinated will have $25 added to their canteen. Prison staff will receive a $500 bonus for getting vaccinated.

“We’re just shy of 60 percent vaccination rate among our staff so, again, we want to encourage them to get vaccinated as much as we do the offenders,” Dr. Arthur Campbell said, the state prisons medical director.

The state is using CARES Act money to pay for the incentives.

Dr. Campbell said while they’ll try to convince people to get the shot, they still won’t require it.

“That’s a highly questionable legal question out there and I think we’re doing fairly well,” Dr. Campbell said.

The Department of Public Safety said 77 percent of offenders are fully vaccinated and nearly 3,000 booster shots have been given so far. NCDPS also said it hasn’t lost a prisoner to COVID-19 since May.