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)

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Until the age of 2, the only suitable milk beverage for ideal growth and development and to prevent nutritional deficiencies in children (other than breastfeeding) is whole cow's milk or formula. Lisa Drayer, CNN, "Got alt-milk? How plant-based alternatives compare," 31 May 2018 Yost placed the village of nearly 400 people in fiscal caution and declared it unauditable in April 2016 because of the deficiencies in the financial records, according to the release. Sheila Vilvens, Cincinnati.com, "State auditor finds unsupported spending, conflict of interest in Clermont County village," 10 May 2018 According to the new Vatican definition, a vulnerable person is anyone who is sick or suffering from a physical or psychiatric deficiency, isn’t able to exercise personal freedom and has a limited capacity to understand or resist the crime. Nicole Winfield, The Seattle Times, "Pope requires sex abuse claims be reported in Vatican City," 30 Mar. 2019 But more than a year after the consultants finished their report, a plan on how to address the deficiencies of each building doesn’t appear forthcoming. James Vaznis, BostonGlobe.com, "Next Boston superintendent will face a massive to-do list," 27 June 2018 Meanwhile Democrats overstate the importance of these factors, as well as the deficiencies of their nominee. Chris Stirewalt, Fox News, "Dems start to get serious about 2020," 1 June 2018 Bottom Line The Solemate Max improves on some of the deficiencies of its older, smaller sibling. Will Dietrich-egensteiner, Popular Mechanics, "Jabra Solemate Max Review: Bigger Yet Similar," 4 Feb. 2014 The Danish bank’s report outlined deficiencies in its anti-money-laundering controls and revealed that $230 billion in potentially illicit funds may have passed through Danske’s Estonian branch. Kristin Broughton And Dominic Chopping, WSJ, "Hedge-Fund Manager Bill Browder Calls for Top Level Staffing Changes at Swedbank as Chairman Resigns," 5 Apr. 2019 Even having a deficiency in vitamin A, a nutrient that is essential for the health of your conjunctiva and cornea, can decrease your tear production, the Mayo Clinic explains. Korin Miller, SELF, "This Is Why Your Eyes Get So Damn Dry—and How to Fix It," 14 Aug. 2018

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.

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First Known Use of deficiency

1603, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for deficiency

defici(ent) entry 1 + -ency

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Statistics for deficiency

Last Updated

23 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for deficiency

The first known use of deficiency was in 1603

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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

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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

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Comments on deficiency

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