Your cheat sheet to coronavirus terminology: Part 1

  • Your cheat sheet to coronavirus terminology: Part 1

    Your cheat sheet to coronavirus terminology: Part 1

    With the coronavirus outbreak came various medical terms used by professionals to describe the new virus and desease. It can sometimes be difficult to remember them all. But you need them to understand the news as the situation evolves and every day brings new events. Here is a glossary with key terms that you need to know right now.


    A family of viruses including Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV).


    COVID-19 is a highly infectious respiratory disease caused by a novel coronavirus. The disease was discovered in China in December 2019 and has since spread around the world.

    The official name for the disease was deliberately chosen to avoid stigmatisation – the “co” stands for Corona, “vi” for virus and “d” for disease, 19 is because the disease emerged in 2019.


    Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, the virus responsible for the 2019 outbreak of COVID-19 disease.

    Wet market

    Wet markets are collections of stalls that sell fresh produce, from fruit to meat and fish as opposed to dry or tinned goods or packaged, chilled meat. Animals sold in these markets are often freshly slaughtered. According to the South China Morning Post, the word “wet” is a reference to the ubiquitous use of water in these markets, including the hosing down of stalls, and tubs of live fish.


    A zoonosis, or zoonotic disease, is a disease that can be passed between animals and humans.

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    Hanna Gembus

    Hanna Gembus is a professional Polish English and Polish German translator and communication specialist based in the United Kingdom providing translation, content, interpreting and market research services to small, medium-sized and large companies and organisations. She specialises in business, marketing and e-commerce, using linguistic and cultural knowledge to help both start-ups and established companies improve their presence on the market and increase sales.

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