Skip to Content
Sign in to Manage Your Health Care

In the Spotlight

Be Social from a Distance

Get out and about - safely

Two women sitting at opposite ends of a park bench, wearing face masksThe safety of Veterans has remained our highest priority. VA is taking precautions to keep you healthy. This includes offering video appointments with your doctor, wearing face coverings at VA facilities, or screening employees and Veterans for COVID-19 symptoms.

You can also protect yourself by practicing ‘physical distancing,’ sometimes called ‘social distancing.’ Physical distancing is when you keep a safe space between you and others when you’re outside of your home. Staying physically distant from others is still one of the best ways to avoid exposure and slow the spread of COVID-19.

Why should I practice physical distancing?

Even if you’re healthy, you should still maintain a safe distance from others. COVID-19 spreads mainly among people who are in close contact or within six feet of each other. The virus spreads when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks, and droplets travel through the air and to people nearby. The further apart you are from someone, the less likely you are to have contact with the virus.

Physical distancing protects you from people who haven’t been diagnosed yet, or don’t have symptoms. People who are infected, but don’t have symptoms, can still spread the virus.

Socialize while being physically distant

Being physically distant doesn’t mean you can’t be social. While at home, you can still socialize with by phone calls and video chats. If warmer weather is tempting you to interact with people outdoors, there are a few things that can help you stay safe:

  • Put a physical distance of six feet between you and friends and family when you spend time together

  • If you’re sharing a table, sit at a diagonal angle from each other, so no one is facing each other

  • Wear a mask when you’re not actually eating and drinking

  • Don’t share any items (cell phones, pens, utensils, condiments, or food)

  • Cover your cough, or sneeze into your sleeve or elbow, not your hands

  • Wash your hands frequently

  • Limit the time of your social interactions

Even though you’re physically distancing, you should still wear your mask or face covering. You should also wash your hands regularly. It may be possible to get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it, and then touching your face. While public health experts don’t believe this is the main way the virus spreads, they’re still learning more. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides the most current recommendations.

Read More

What is Social Distancing? (CDC)

Do You Have a Mask?

Access VA Care from Home

Help Stop the Spread

Dr. Richard Stone: #IWearAMaskFor America (VAntage Point)


Updated July 8, 2020