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Classic ‘Scrubs’ Scene Teaches Us How Quickly Infection Spreads, Importance of Social Distancing (Video)

Follow the green glow

Healthcare officials are encouraging everyone to practice “social distancing” as the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread. But if you don’t actually know what that means — and we promise not to tell anyone if you don’t — that’s OK, because a classic clip from “Scrubs” that has recently gone (excuse the pun) viral is here to help.

In the clip above — which is from “My Cabbage,” a Season 5 episode of the now-ended medical comedy starring Zach Braff — Dr. Kelso (Ken Jenkins) explains to the Janitor (Neil Flynn) how quickly infection can spread as we watch a series of seemingly innocent events occur in succession, all starting with a kid’s sneeze.

“Infection can start with a simple sneeze,” Kelso begins his narration, which illustrates the movement of germs from person to person using a glowing green hand/arm. “And then a handshake. Perhaps an accidental collision. Then a simple touch on the shoulder. And just like that you have a patient in trouble.”

What Kelso is getting at here, and what is important to remember now that we’re all trying avoid contracting COVID-19, is that infection can spread so easily when people aren’t paying attention, aren’t practicing good hygiene, and are in especially tight quarters — like a hospital.

The benefit of us practicing “social distancing” is when we’re further apart from other people — people who might be infected, but we can’t see that because their hands don’t *actually* glow green to show it — we’re at a lower risk of getting the coronavirus. Get it?

Watch the clip above, but be forewarned, it ends on a very sad note, as the elderly Mrs. Wilk — the Sacred Heart staff’s favorite patient — is accidentally infected with a disease by Cabbage, an intern who wasn’t cut out to be a doctor, and on his way out of the hospital shook Mrs. Wilk’s hand after picking up a dirty medical glove.