Costcutter has built 20 pop-up stores in NHS hospitals to serve doctors and nurses who are unable to get to the shops.
It comes as Tesco announced it was working on a new store at the NHS Nightingale Hospital being opened at the NEC in Birmingham.
Costcutter Supermarkets Group said it has worked in partnership with food service giant Compass to open the stores.
It said the new shops will fill units left by the temporary closure of some retail spaces across the hospital sites.
The new pop-up stores will provide NHS key workers with access to everyday essentials such as bread and milk, bosses added.
The unbranded stores will be manned by the hospitals’ restaurant staff and mainly make use of existing equipment within the hospitals.
Bill Randles, head of national retail accounts at Costcutter, said: “With a number of retail units forced to close due to the Covid-19 crisis, it is vitally important that the NHS staff at these hospitals can easily get hold of core grocery and household products that they need.”
Andrew Jones, Compass UK & Ireland’s managing director of healthcare retail, said: “By putting in place these pop-up stores, we can take away a small amount of the pressure they are feeling at this challenging time.”
Meanwhile, fast food chain Leon has launched an online delivery service selling groceries and ready-meals, with profits initially going to the NHS.
John Vincent, founder and chief executive of Leon, said: “We’ve created Feed Britain to connect people directly to the suppliers who traditionally provided food and ingredients to restaurants.
“There are many suppliers who no longer have restaurants to sell their produce to. And at the same time people stuck at home are finding long delays on their supermarket home deliveries.”
Full list of hospitals with pop-up Costcutter stores:
Queen Elizabeth Hospital
St Richard’s Hospital
National Hospital for Neurology & Neurosurgery
Northwick Park Hospital
Peterborough City Hospital
St. Helens Hospital
Kings Mill Hospital
North Middlesex Hospital
Leeds General Infirmary
Bradford Royal Infirmary
Newcastle Royal Infirmary
Kings College Hospital
Huddersfield Royal Infirmary
Royal Surrey County Hospital