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Merriam-Webster Adds More Coronavirus Terms, Including “Self-Isolate,” “Contactless,” and “PPE”

The pandemic and ensuing quarantine has introduced all of us to words we may not have otherwise known…or otherwise existed! While medical professionals may have known, I had no idea that PPE stood for personal protection equipment!

Quarantine has also given rise to new social media acronyms. You may already know what WTF means, but how about WFT? (Working From Home).

We’ve had to learn a bunch of new vocabulary words during the outbreak.  And Merriam-Webster just added more of them to their online dictionary.

They already added a bunch back in March, including “COVID-19” . . . “social distancing” . . . and “community spread.”  Here are ten new ones they just added . . .

1.  “Self-isolate” . . . to isolate or separate oneself from others.

2.  “Physical distancing” . . . the practice of maintaining a greater than usual distance between yourself and others.

3.  “Contactless” . . . not involving contact.  Like contactless delivery.

4.  “WFH” . . . it stands for “working from home.”

5.  “PPE” . . . or personal protective equipment.

6.  “Forehead thermometer” . . . which we’ve all seen now.

7.  “Intensivist” . . . a doctor who specializes in intensive care.

8.  “Epidemic curve” . . . a.k.a. the curve we’ve been trying to flatten.

9.  “Herd immunity” . . . when a significant proportion of the population has become immune.

10.  “Iatrophobia”  (eye-ah-truh-FO-bee-uh) . . . an intense fear of doctors.  They also added hundreds of words that AREN’T linked to the outbreak.  Including “deepfake” . . . “dark web” . . . “truthiness” . . . and the slang term “thirsty”  (showing a strong desire for attention, approval, or publicity.)


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