Hy-Vee reserves the first hour of each day for its most vulnerable customers

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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) -- As coronavirus continues to sweep the nation, another grocery chain has joined the rising number of stores that are reserving the first hour of each day to their most vulnerable customers.

Hy-Vee announced Wednesday it will set aside the 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. hour every day for the customers it considers “high-risk.”

Its pharmacies too, including the ones at its grocery stores, Mainstreet locations, Dollar Fresh stores, and Hy-Vee Drugstores, will open early so customers can get their prescriptions filled during that time as well.

“We are extremely concerned about the spread of this virus, and want to respond to our customers who are at higher risk of serious illness by offering them a time where they may feel a bit safer shopping in our stores,” Hy-Vee’s chairman, CEO and president Randy Edeker said.

Hy-Vee wants to dedicate that hour to customers who are:

  • 60 or older
  • Expectant mothers
  • Anyone with an underlying health condition that makes them more susceptible to serious illness

“We know that our customers are facing some very challenging times right now, and we want to do all we can to help them,” Edeker added. “We hope this new reserved shopping hour helps our customers feel a bit more secure while we work together as a community to help keep everyone healthy and safe.”

All other customers are asked to respect that the seven o’clock hour is meant for those customers only and limit their shopping to between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.

Several other stores have already said they want to reserve that first hour for at-risk customers also, including Target, Dollar General, Festival Foods, and Metcalfe's.