Differences Between Isolation, Quarantine and Social Distancing
The World Health Organization has recommended these public health strategies to stop the new coronavirus, but how shall we differentiate between them and apply the appropriate one in each case?
April 6, 2020
Translated and edited by Walter Lippmann for CubaNews.
Isolation applies to people who have tested positive for Covid-19, to suspected cases or to people who have had close contact with sick people and who would have a high probability of having contracted the virus.
Isolation should be strict to avoid contact between people who have become ill and those who are healthy and is usually done within a hospital or health center, with the necessary medical supervision.
It is the way to limit the movement of healthy people who may have been exposed to the virus and do not know it. Quarantine lasts 14 days and must be done by all people who arrived from the affected and high transmission areas of covid-19.
Many people have made the decision to stay home voluntarily, as a preventive measure for two weeks. This way they will avoid contact with other people. By not attending work, not receiving visitors at home, and not using public transportation, the risk of contagion is potentially reduced.
If you are not in quarantine or isolation, when you leave your home for strictly necessary reasons, such as going to the supermarket or pharmacy, you should adopt social distancing: separating one meter from another person, minimizing activities or going to public places.