There has been traffic on the Great Bend Tribune’s social media sites, as well as phone calls to the Tribune, regarding an inventory crew from Johnson County working at the Great Bend 10th Street Dillons. The concern was that Johnson County has been a hot spot for COVID-19 cases in Kansas.
All calls to the local store were directed to the Dillons headquarters in Hutchinson as per corporate policy, said Sheila Lowrie, Hutchinson-based corporate affairs manager. She issued the following statement Thursday afternoon:
We did have an inventory completed for one store and pharmacy in Great Bend with the assistance of a vendor partner (the company is from Merriam in Johnson County). Together, we have taken the utmost care and concern to complete the process with respect to safety of our associates and customer. Working closely with our vendor partner, we instituted additional safety steps as a precaution.
The following have been observed inside the store:
1. Social distancing of at least 6 feet will be practiced at all times.
2. Smaller inventory team with 10 people.
3. Personal hygiene to follow the CDC guidelines for frequent hand washing. If any associate on the team is symptomatic (cough, fever, etc.) they must not participate in inventory at the store.
4. Sanitizing equipment before, during, and after the inventory.
Lastly, the additional measures will be in place for counters in pharmacies:
1. The inventory service conducted in the pharmacy is provided by the employees who are responsible for inventorying hospitals and large pharmacies, who are keenly aware of cleanliness, personal sanitation, and professionalism.
2. Smaller team of 3 inventory counters were in the pharmacy and did not leave until it was completed, with attention to social distancing.
3. They sanitized their equipment before they enter the pharmacy then throughout the process.
4. Proper personal hygiene to wash hands and sanitize before entering was followed.
5. With the process, inventory crews scanned tags and physically touched as little product as necessary to complete the audit.
As a result of reported concerns, the inventory schedule for Friday (at the Dillons store on Main Street) will be completed in the early morning hours while the store is closed for business.
In addition, Lowrie said rumors that people are being transferred to the Great Bend stores from Johnson County are not true.