deficiency

noun
de·​fi·​cien·​cy | \ di-ˈfi-shən-sē How to pronounce deficiency (audio) \
plural deficiencies

Definition of deficiency

1 : the quality or state of being defective or of lacking some necessary quality or element : the quality or state of being deficient : inadequacy suffers from a deficiency of critical thinking
2 : an amount that is lacking or inadequate : shortage staffing deficiencies : such as
a : a shortage of substances necessary to health a vitamin C deficiency hormone deficiencies
b genetics : deletion sense 2b(1)

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of deficiency in a Sentence

The disease may be caused by nutritional deficiencies. The book's major deficiency is its poor plot. a deficiency of vitamin C There are several deficiencies in his plan. The accident was caused by deficiencies in the engine.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web Many countries have tried to solve the tank’s main deficiency, a lack of strategic mobility, by literally making tanks that could fly. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Hey, Flying Tanks Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time," 26 Feb. 2021 In order to reinvigorate themselves, the group launches into an experiment in microdosing alcohol in accordance with a theory that humans are born with a .05 percent deficiency. Alison Willmore, Vulture, "The 101 Greatest Endings in Movies History," 22 Feb. 2021 Collins, who was 30 at the time, was suffering from a severe sodium deficiency that night that affected his balance and slurred his speech. Jeff Mcdonald, San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego County, Sheriff’s Department lose appeal in inmate ‘brain bleed’ case," 18 Feb. 2021 Seal has Common Variable Immunodeficiency Disorder (CVID), a type of primary immune deficiency (PID). Zamira Rahim, CNN, "Life after Covid: The people who will re-enter society last," 31 Jan. 2021 In August, inspectors found one deficiency at Meadowbrook related to infection control. Dallas News, "Denton County has reported six COVID-19 deaths in two days at Frisco memory care facility," 29 Oct. 2020 Russo would be delayed in her mission to cure that deficiency. Kevin Spear, USA TODAY, "'They won't have to separate from ... family': Florida attraction to get glass-bottom boat for wheelchairs," 25 Jan. 2021 The Gophers' first home loss further exposed a glaring deficiency that can only be fixed in recruiting. Star Tribune, "Richard Pitino must address a Gophers liability: rotten shooting," 23 Jan. 2021 King Boston was launched in 2017 to address what organizers viewed as a glaring deficiency, considering MLK spent some of his formative years in Boston. Philip Marcelo, Chron, "A memorial will rise in the spot where MLK and Coretta met and studied," 15 Jan. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'deficiency.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of deficiency

1603, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for deficiency

defici(ent) entry 1 + -ency

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about deficiency

Time Traveler for deficiency

Time Traveler

The first known use of deficiency was in 1603

See more words from the same year

Statistics for deficiency

Last Updated

6 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Deficiency.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/deficiency. Accessed 8 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for deficiency

deficiency

noun

English Language Learners Definition of deficiency

: a lack of something that is needed : the state of not having enough of something necessary
: a problem in the way something is made or formed

deficiency

noun
de·​fi·​cien·​cy | \ di-ˈfi-shən-sē How to pronounce deficiency (audio) \
plural deficiencies

Kids Definition of deficiency

: the condition of being without something necessary and especially something required for health a vitamin deficiency

deficiency

noun
de·​fi·​cien·​cy | \ di-ˈfish-ən-sē How to pronounce deficiency (audio) \
plural deficiencies

Medical Definition of deficiency

1 : a shortage of substances (as vitamins) necessary to health
2 : deletion

Keep scrolling for more

deficiency

noun
de·​fi·​cien·​cy | \ di-ˈfi-shən-sē How to pronounce deficiency (audio) \
plural deficiencies

Legal Definition of deficiency

: an amount that is lacking or inadequate: as
a : the difference between the amount of tax owed and the amount of tax paid
b : the difference between the amount owed under a security agreement and the amount the creditor is able to recover upon default of the debtor by selling the collateral

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on deficiency

What made you want to look up deficiency? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Who Knew?

How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!