Social distancing v. quarantine v. isolation

What's the difference anyway?

We thought we’d keep things simple this week by covering something that many people may still be unclear on. What’s the difference between social distancing, quarantine, and isolation?

The term physical distancing (sometimes better known as social distancing) is the act of standing 2 meters (6 feet) away from other people. Physical distancing also includes a broad set of measures encouraging people to refrain from shaking hands, avoid crowds, and most importantly staying at home if you feel sick.

Isolation is for those who are already sick and is meant to protect healthy people by keeping the infected in confinement. Isolation is critical to avoid the spread of the virus.

Quarantines are recommended for families, groups and communities in order to separate and restrict movement of people who may have been exposed to COVID-19 to see if they become sick.

All of this is summarized below in our handy infographic:

This issue was adapted from a post on the site available here. Please feel free to share your thoughts, questions, and concerns — you can get a hold of us via email, TwitterInstagram, and the site itself.