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Why stand 6’ apart?

An infectious disease specialist breaks down this social distancing number.

Article Author: Vikki Mioduszewski

Article Date:

COVID-19 Q&A graphic with an image of footprints

We've all heard about social distancing. It means staying at least 6 feet away from other individuals. Why 6 feet? It goes back to high school physiology class. In case you don't remember that far back, Mobeen Rathore, MD, chief of Pediatric Infectious Disease and Immunology for Wolfson Children's Hospital and co-director of the Baptist Health Infection Prevention and Control Committee, explained:

"The respiratory spread of a viral infection is by two types of particles: those less than 5 microns in size or greater than 5 microns. While coronaviruses are greater than 5 microns, or heavier, they tend to settle within 3 feet. However, with the force of a cough or sneeze, they can travel well beyond 3 feet. We are recommending a distance of 6 feet out of an abundance of caution since this is a new virus and we are still learning about it."


At Baptist Health, we want to help keep you and your family informed about COVID-19. We're coordinating with the health department and following CDC guidelines to ensure the health and safety of our community. For more information, visit baptistjax.com/covid19.

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