American coffeehouse chain Starbucks has extended temporary café closures and modified operations until 3 May due to the Covid-19 crisis.

As part of the decision, Starbucks will serve customers through the selected drive-thru, mobile ordering and delivery-only stores.

The coffeehouse chain also announced that Starbucks employees, who are self-isolating or chose to stay home, will continue to receive Catastrophe Pay for the additional time period.

Partners, who elected to work during the crisis, will receive an additional $3 per hour along with service pay.

The company will continue providing other temporarily expanded benefits for employees, including childcare support and other discounts.

The steps were announced by Starbucks EVP and president of the US and Canada-operated businesses Rossann Williams in an open letter to partners.

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In the letter, Williams said: “We know the science on Covid-19 is rapidly evolving as researchers learn more.

“As it does, we want to continue to take proactive steps to ensure the health and safety of our partners as that remains our top priority.”

The company is planning to deliver thermometers to all company-operated stores. The step will enable the employees to self-monitor their health before starting their shifts.

Starbucks closed the majority of the company-operated cafés in the US and Canada last month to contain the spread of the virus.

Meanwhile, the number of Covid-19 cases in the US has increased to 216,000. Globally, the figure stands at more than 937,000, while the death toll has crossed 47,200.