World Health Organisation (WHO), on February 11, announced that the novel Coronavirus 2019 would officially be called Covid-19.
WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced the official name on Twitter. “Having a name matters to prevent the use of other names that can be inaccurate or stigmatizing,” Ghebreyesus said.
We now have a name for the disease caused by the novel coronavirus: COVID-19.
— Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus (@DrTedros) February 11, 2020
The ‘Co’ stands for corona, ‘vi’ for virus, ‘d’ for disease, and the ’19’ stands for the year of its outbreak. Tedros said the name had been chosen to avoid references to a specific geographical location, animal species or group of people in line with international recommendations for naming aimed at preventing stigmatisation.
Previously, Covid-19 was called as the 2019-nCoV acute respiratory disease by WHO, and China’s National Health Commission temporarily called it novel coronavirus pneumonia.
Ghebreyesus further informed the media that the United Nations (UN) has activated a Crisis Management Team to ensure WHO focuses on Covid-19. At the same time, other agencies are working on the social, economic, and developmental implications of the virus.
WHO expects the first vaccine for coronavirus to be ready in 18 months. The WHO is, meanwhile, working on measures to prevent any further spread of coronavirus.
Covid-19 has, so far, killed over 1,100 people, while infecting over 40,000, mostly in China.
(with inputs from Reuters)
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