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Publix offers extended shopping hours for first responders, hospital staff

Winn-Dixie stores feature similar hours for front-line workers.

LAKELAND, Fla. — First responders and health care employees are getting a little bit of extra shopping time to avoid the crowds at Publix during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

The grocery company announced it is designating Thursday evenings and Friday mornings for those front-line workers. It begins Thursday, April 16.

Hours include:

  • 8-9 p.m. Thursdays
  • 7-8 a.m. Fridays

Publix Pharmacy also will be open during these hours, the company said.

Southeastern Grocers, the parent company of BI-LO, Fresco y Más, Harveys Supermarket and Winn-Dixie stores, earlier announced a special 8-9 a.m. hour on Mondays and Tuesdays for front-line workers.

Winn-Dixie stores across the country also paid off thousands of health care workers and first responders' grocery bills Monday evening.

Grocery stores across the country have limited hours and designated special senior shopping times in an effort to limit the spread of coronavirus. Most companies, including Target, said changing hours allows staff to make sure surfaces are clean and shelves are stocked.

RELATED: Publix employee at South Pasadena store tests positive for coronavirus

RELATED: Publix launches contactless payment option at registers to limit spread of COVID-19

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