Six weeks after the outbreak that has killed more than 1,000 people, the World Health Organization has named the deadly SARS-like disease ‘COVID-19’. The director-general of the global body, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, at a conference in Geneva this afternoon, announced the new name.
He said the word “COVID” refers to a group of viruses that contains the ones which cause the illnesses SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) and MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome).
COVID: C – O stands for Corona,
V – I stands for Virus
D stands for Disease
The virus was first identified in the city of Wuhan, China, in late December. Since then it has infected more than 43,000 people and killed 1,018. At least 1,018 people have now died because of the COVID-19 outbreak – all but two of the deaths have been in mainland China
Why Is the Name Important
To prevent the use of other names that can be inaccurate or stigmatizing.
To gives a standard format to use for any future coronavirus outbreaks.
World Health Organization has an international set of rules which scientists must follow when proposing new names for a virus.
They must not contain references to certain places in the world, communities, human names or animals because they may cause a ‘backlash’ or racism.
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