ESSENCE tracks patient chief complaints and discharge diagnoses from 105 emergency departments across the State. We typically receive information from participating emergency departments within 24 hours of a patient encounter. We use syndromes in ESSENCE to get pre-diagnostic estimates of health conditions being reported from emergency departments. Syndromes are combinations of words that may be related to a patient’s medical condition, but are not confirmation of a clinical diagnosis. The pre-diagnostic information we get from syndromes help us estimate whether an abnormal number of patients are seeking care with similar illnesses upon registration at the emergency department.