In a statement released earlier on Monday, the World Health Organization announced that it would now be using “mpox” as the new preferred term for the monkeypox disease.
The statement by the WHO said that the new preferred term has been decided upon after consultations with experts around the globe.
Experts previously warned that “monkeypox” could be stigmatizing to the primates it was named after – but who play little role in its spread – and to the African continent that the animals are often associated with.
Evidence of this appeared when large scores of people began attacking monkeys over disease fears in Brazil earlier this year.
A number of individuals and countries had voiced their concerns in numerous meetings and urged the WHO to change the term used to referred to the virus, the UN agency said.
Under the International Classification of Diseases (ICD), WHO is responsible for the naming of new and, in exceptional cases, renaming existing diseases.