Posted by: Jack Henry | April 23, 2019

Editor’s Corner: Different Demics

Hello everyone! I hope this finds you in good health. One of the disaster recovery specialists in our department sends us monthly preparedness information, and something he sent during flu season caught my eye. It was a tip of the week about endemics, epidemics, and pandemicsit doesnt get more exciting than that!

Today lets have a look at these words, where they are from, and the differences between them.

  • endemic (adj.): a disease with a constant presence in a region. From Greek en "in" + dmos "people

    Example: In North America, winter colds and flu are endemic; in large areas of Africa, malaria is endemic.

  • epidemic (adj.)

A sudden outbreak where the tally of new cases exceeds expectations for an infectious disease in a given region. From Greek epi "among, upon" + dmos "people, district.

Example: The article said that between 1988 to 1990, California experienced its worst measles epidemic in decades. The cause? People not getting the measles vaccine for their children.

  • pandemic (adj.)

A disease that exceeds expected case levels but may also spread over many countries or continents. From Greek pan- "all" + dmos "people"

Example: At first, the Black Plague seemed to be contained to a certain area of Asia, but by 1353 they estimate this pandemic killed up to 200 million people in Europe and Asia.

On that note, I hope you all have a very jolly day!

Spread of the Black Death (named for the lymph nodes that became

black and swollen after bacteria entered through the skin)

Kara Church

Technical Editor, Advisory

Symitar Documentation Services

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