Walmart, Costco take extra precautions as virus cases spike

National

SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Starting Monday, Costco is requiring that everyone must either wear a face mask or a face shield if they have a medical condition.

Children under the age of 2 years old are the only exception to the rule.

The wholesale retailer first required people to wear masks while entering its stores in May but allowed people with medical conditions to forgo the covering. Now, they are taking it a step further as coronavirus cases continue to spike across the country.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not recommend face shields as a substitute for a mask, but if you can’t wear a mask for medical reasons, then it’s your best option. It is advised that people make sure the face shield covers your entire face and chin.

Doctors applaud Costco for taking these measures.

“There is absolutely no doubt that wearing masks prevents this spread,” said Dr. Edward Ward, vice-chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Rush University Medical Group. “I’m sympathetic to the folks who have those underlying conditions, but the other thing that we’ve found is they may be the people who are at risk for having the worst complications from this. So I would say those folks more than anybody really need to protect themselves.”

Walmart is also changing its policy. The retail giant is starting to limit capacity to 20%.

Walmart started limiting capacity in May. When cases started to decline, they stopped counting customers at the door. But amid a second wave, Walmart said it will start doing it again.

This comes with the approach of the holiday shopping season and the winter months. Walmart said this will help them control crowds.

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