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Costco will give health workers, first responders priority to enter stores

The retail giant is supporting the heroes of the COVID-19 pandemic by allowing them priority access to pick up essentials.
/ Source: TODAY

Costco has announced it will be giving health care workers and first responders priority access to enter its stores amid the ongoing coronavirus health crisis.

Those who are on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic are now able to skip to the front of the store's lines, which have become increasingly longer, so they can get in and out faster.

The new protocol, which was announced Wednesday, includes police officers, emergency medical technicians, firefighters, as well as doctors and nurses. To get to the front of the line, eligible personnel just have to show their Costco membership card, along with a valid work ID, according to a statement on the company’s website.

"Costco is temporarily allowing priority access to our warehouses during all open hours for Costco members who are healthcare workers and first responders such as police officers, EMTs and firefighters," the statement read.

The new policy is the latest of Costco's latest coronavirus-related efforts. Last month, the store implemented special shopping hours (from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays) for members who are 60 and older, or those who have physical impairments.

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To further encourage social distancing, the retail giant also updated its shopping policy to limit the number of people who may enter each store. Now, only two people per membership card are permitted to enter at a time.

Costco is giving priority store access to health care workers and first responders amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Costco is giving priority store access to health care workers and first responders amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Costco/ Instagram

In addition, Costco is maintaining limits on several high-demand items such as toilet paper, sanitizers and bottled water.

Folks on Twitter are applauding Costco’s efforts to help flatten the curve.

“Thank you @Costco. Most appreciated & a great way to help keep healthcare providers & first responders exposure time outside of work to a minimum,” wrote one person.

Added another, “Happy to see businesses supporting our first responders!”

Costco is the latest major retailer to offer special store access to health care providers. In late March, the grocery chain Winn-Dixie added a special shopping hour, from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. every Monday and Tuesday, for "our frontline warriors." Last week, Save Mart, FoodMaxx and Lucky stores began offering priority shopping access to first responders at stores throughout California and Nevada.