WHO to rename monkeypox virus as scientists call it 'stigmatizing'

World health body chief to announce new name soon



File photo
File photo

By Web Desk

Published: Thu 16 Jun 2022, 9:34 PM

Last updated: Thu 16 Jun 2022, 10:45 PM

The World Health Organization announced Tuesday that it will rename the monkeypox virus after a group scientists raised concerns that the name is “discriminatory and stigmatizing.”

A group of 30 international scientists seeking a name change published a letter on June 10, according to an NDTV report.

"The prevailing perception in the international media and scientific literature is that monkeypox virus is endemic in people in some African countries. In the context of the current global outbreak, continued reference to, and nomenclature of this virus being African is not only inaccurate but is also discriminatory and stigmatizing," they wrote in the letter.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO, said: “WHO is working with partners and experts from around the world on changing the name of monkeypox virus, its clades, and the disease it causes,”

“We will make announcements about the new names as soon as possible,” he added.

Ghebreyesus said that the world health body will make an announcement about the new name as soon as possible.

Monkeypox is commonly found in Africa, but there have been outbreaks in several countries across the world recently.


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