As the number of COVID-19 cases grows in North Carolina, grocery stores and their customers are taking precautions to limit the spread of the virus.
While most people are being encouraged to stay home and practice social distancing, supermarkets are keeping their doors open to provide essential goods. Changing store hours, adding extra paid sick leave and suspending some in-store services are some of the safeguards these businesses have put in place to protect the health and safety of customers and employees.
“Especially in times of uncertainty, we believe everyone deserves to have access to quality food and essential medicine,” Danna Robinson, communication manager for Harris Teeter, said. “We want to ensure all our shoppers have access to in-demand products. We are working closely with our suppliers to replenish our inventories.”
The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services issued guidance for businesses to follow to prevent the spread of the virus and what to do if a patron is diagnosed with the virus after leaving their store. Some of the steps include quarantine, contacting the local health department and environmental cleaning.
Kristin Prelipp, the public information officer for the Orange County Health Department, said residents can also take precautions when going to grocery stores. She said one person per household should go to the store, use hand sanitizer after leaving the retail location, wash their hands when returning home and after unloading groceries and sanitize any debit or credit card used during transactions.