Conservative and Labour MPs not scheduled to put a query to Boris Johnson have been told to stay away from Prime Minister’s Questions.
Amid fears over coronavirus spreading at Westminster, the government chief whip asked politicians “respectfully” to “adhere to this advice”.
Labour urged its MPs to stay away in order to avoid “crowding”.
Far fewer than normal from all parties are attended the usually busy and boisterous session.
With the green benches far emptier than normal and the atmosphere much quieter, Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle promised to ensure “maximum safety”.
He added: “We are all doing our best to keep Parliament sitting and to follow Public Health England guidance.”
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn praised MPs’ “very sensible approach, sitting apart to stop cross-fertilising” a “horrible disease”.
There has been much speculation in recent days that Parliament will close as the coronavirus crisis worsens, but there are currently no plans to do so.
On Monday, Sir Lindsay said there would be no access to the public gallery, and non-essential access would be stopped.
Several MPs have self-isolated, while Health Minister Nadine Dorries has been diagnosed with coronavirus.
Conservative Michael Fabricant tweeted that Westminster was a “major hotspot for #covid19UK”.
He added: “Yesterday, a colleague suddenly sneezed in the House of Commons Chamber before he could catch it in his hands, let alone a tissue. I’ll watch #PMQs from my office!”