The term syndemic refers to the phenomenon of
linked afflictions. Scholars and practitioners have long observed
interactions among disease processes, but it wasn’t until the early 1990s that
anthropologist Merrill Singer suggested that empirical connections among
epidemics might signify the existence of a higher-order phenomenon--a syndemic. The links below introduce some of the ideas and methods
that are involved in exploring a syndemic orientation for public health.
A more extensive, case-based discussion of this
topic and its implications for transforming public health work is available
in the monograph entitled, Hygeia's
Constellation: Navigating Health Futures in a Dynamic and Democratic World.
Download this section (PDF-397K).
Milstein B. Introduction to the Syndemics Prevention Network.
Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2002. Available
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Page last reviewed: January 30, 2008
Page last modified: January 30, 2008
Content source: Division of Adult
and Community Health,
National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion