CVS to provide bonuses, add benefits, hire 50K in response to COVID-19

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FILE – In this May 30, 2019, file photo, a CVS store with the new HealthHUB is shown in Spring, Texas.Pharmacy chains, including CVS, are fighting claims that they’re to blame for the opioid crisis in two Ohio counties. The Monday, Jan. 6, 2020, filings asked U.S. district Court Judge Dan Polster to find in the pharmacies’ favor and reject claims brought by Summit and Cuyahoga counties, home to Akron and Cleveland respectively, that argue that chains such as CVS, Rite Aid and Walgreens contributed to the problem by filling an “excessive volume” of opioid prescriptions. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File)

WOONSOCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — CVS Health is looking to add to its workforce, while recognizing the company’s current employees play an essential role in combating the coronavirus pandemic.

The company announced Monday it will be awarding bonuses to employees who are required to be at CVS facilities to assist patients and customers in this time of unprecedented need.

Bonuses will range from $150 to $500. They will be awarded to pharmacists and other health care professionals, store associates and managers and other site-based hourly employees.

“Our colleagues have demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to providing essential goods and services at a time when they’re needed most,” Larry Merlo, President and CEO of CVS Health said. “As they continue to be there for the individuals and families we serve, we’re taking extra steps to provide some peace of mind and help them navigate these uncertain times.”

CVS also plans to immediately fill 50,000 full-time, part-time and temporary positions across the country.

Positions will include store associates, home delivery drivers, distribution center employees and member/customer service professionals.

The company says they will use a technology-enabled hiring process — virtual job fairs, virtual interviews and virtual job tryouts.

The new additions will help existing employees who will also benefit from the following changes:

  • CVS Health will launch a new offering to help employees with both child and elder or adult dependent care needs. Working with the Bright Horizons network of national in-home and center-based daycare providers, employees will be able to take advantage of up to 25 fully covered days of backup care. This benefit will begin in early April for both full- and part-time employees.
  • Full-time CVS Health employees have always had access to paid sick leave. Effective March 22, CVS Health has made 24 hours of paid sick leave available to part-time employees for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic. This paid sick leave is in addition to the 14-day paid leave the company is providing for any employee who tests positive for COVID-19 or needs to be quarantined as a result of potential exposure.

CVS says they have been prioritizing the distribution of protective gear to the hardest-hit areas.

“The health and well-being of our colleagues has always come first,” Merlo said. “We’ve been working around the clock to increase availability of supplies and update protocols to ensure our stores are safe for colleagues and customers alike.”

CVS employees also have several resources to help with financial hardships during the pandemic. This includes access to the Employee Relief Fund, which provides short-term, immediate financial relief in the form of tax-exempt grants.

For more information, you can visit CVS’ COVID-19 resource center.

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