The Carolina Eye Associates chain has laid off temporarily at least 185 employees in eight offices statewide, including nine in Winston-Salem and 20 in Greensboro.

The chain did not cite the reason for the temporary layoffs and reduction in workforce hours that began Friday in its WARN Act notices to local mayors and the N.C. Commerce Department.

The company said on its website it will accept customers with urgent and emergent-care needs until further notice.

“Due to the growing cases of COVID-19 in the United States and North Carolina, Carolina Eye Associates is following the guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as the American Academy of Ophthalmology, to cease any non-urgent patient care, as well as all elective surgeries,” the company said.

“Safety is the number one priority at Carolina Eye Associates. This decision is in the best interest of our patients, doctors and staff.” For more information, call (910) 295-2100.

The eight filings listed the number of affected jobs in each position and their pay for each of the eight offices.

The WARN notice is part of the process required by the employer to make affected employees eligible for state unemployment-insurance benefits.

Carolina Eye Associates’ Winston-Salem office is at 725 Highland Oaks Drive, Suite 101, while the Greensboro office is at 3312 Battleground Ave.

Affected in Winston-Salem are two physicians, three ophthalmic assistants, two patient-services representatives, a physician assistant and a certified ophthalmic assistant.

It is the first official WARN Act notice filed for Forsyth in 2020.

The company’s largest layoffs are taking place in Southern Pines, where 117 employees are listed as affected at its main office.

The other layoffs are occurring in Albemarle (9), Asheboro (6), Fayetteville (8), Rockingham (14) and Wadesboro (2).

Centers in Dunn, Laurinburg, Sanford and Cheraw, S.C., apparently were not affected by the temporary layoffs.

rcraver@wsjournal.com

336-727-7376

@rcraverWSJ

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