Coronavirus Key Terms

WORDS TO KNOW 

Coronavirus – A large family of viruses that are common in people and many different species of animals. 

SARS-CoV-2 – Abbreviation for the name give to the new coronavirus (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2). It is a new strain, not previously identified in humans.

COVID-19 – Abbreviation for the disease caused by the novel (or new) coronavirus. 

Social Distancing – Measures intended to limit the movement of people in order to interrupt the transmission of infectious, contagious diseases. 

Isolation – Separates sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick.  

Quarantine – Separates and restricts the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick.  

Community Spread – When people have been infected with the virus in an area and some are not sure how or where they became infected.  

Epidemic – Affecting or tending to affect a disproportionately large number of individuals within a population, community or region at the same time. 

Pandemic – Occurring over a wide geographic area and affecting an exceptionally high proportion of the population.

Presumptive Positive - Individuals with at least one respiratory specimen that tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19 at a state or local laboratory. 

 

Sources: U.S. Centers for Disease Control, Merriam-Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary