Social Distancing

 

A baseline before the rigorous prevention measures, social distancing or physical distancing, has helped save millions of lives together with confinement, as shown by two studies in June 2020.

According to two studies, one published in the journal Nature and another conducted by Stanford University and the Imperial College of London, social distancing has prevented more than 500 million infections and more than 3 million deaths during the coronavirus crisis.

Social distancing is one of the most essential and effective attitudes to stop the virus's advancement and spread. This argument is based on the reasoning that it is impossible to stop the advance of the disease if there is not a certain distance between people when an infectious disease is transmitted outside. This distance should be preferably two meters, according to the experts.

Respecting confinement, avoiding crowds and maintaining a safe distance.

The distance measures start with restrictive rules such as lockdowns and confinement, letting people leave their homes only for essential activities such as shopping, going to the pharmacy or medical centers and prohibiting a large influx of people in as sporting, musical, theatrical events and public spaces (schools, universities, workplaces). Respecting these measures decreases the rate of contraction as in the example of the SARS of 2003, which was contained through the diagnosis of positive people and their subsequent isolation.

The Importance of Social Distancing in Outdoor Activities

Based on these results, the scientist behind a Belgian-Dutch study referred to different distances for different activities such as walking, running, and cycling. According to this paper by KU Leuven and TU Eindhoven, the distance of people moving in the same direction on the same route should be at least 4–5 meters for walking, 10 meters for running and slow cycling and at least 20 meters for regular cycling. It is also recommended to be in a different lane at a considerable distance when passing by a cyclist.

Social distancing has been appreciated to the extent that it yielded even an innovation, a smart band to control capacity in stores and public spaces by Wardoo. The Madrid company Wardoo Tech has created a 'smartband' to control capacity in stores and public spaces. Our readers can read several other innovations that support the social distancing efforts, including bracelets, the OpenTable solution for reserving an aisle for grocery shopping, the SmartDome which senses movement and warns about maintaining social distance.