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Grocery Stores, Banks Among Locations That Should Reopen First: Study

THURSDAY, June 11, 2020 (HealthDay News) — As coronavirus pandemic lockdowns ease in the United States, grocery stores, banks, dentists, universities and big box stores should be allowed to reopen sooner and with fewer restrictions than other locations, researchers say.

Cafes, gyms, sporting goods stores, bookstores, tobacco and liquor stores should be remain closed longer and have tighter restrictions, according to the study published Tuesday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, CNN reported.

The researchers conducted a cost benefit analysis of 26 different types of locations to compare their importance with the infection risk they may pose to people.

They also analyzed tracking data from 47 million mobile phones to determine where Americans went during February and March, CNN reported.

“We find colleges to offer a relatively good trade-off, but most have shut down, leading to a 61% decline in visits,” the authors wrote.

“Conversely, we find liquor and tobacco stores to be relatively poor trade-offs [due to mediocre economic importance and small busy stores], yet the number of visits to this category has declined by less than 5%,” they added.

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