The illness now has a name, CoViD-19

The World Health Organization (WHO) has given a name to the illness caused by the new coronavirus: CoViD-19. The name stands for coronavirus disease 2019, the year when the illness was first detected.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has given a name to the illness caused by the new coronavirus: CoViD-19. The name stands for coronavirus disease 2019, the year when the illness was first detected. Tedros Adhanom Ghebrevesus, MD, director-general of the WHO, stressed that, in order to avoid any stigma, the new name makes no reference to any of the people, places, or animals that have been linked to the coronavirus. Under international guidelines, the WHO "had to find a name that did not refer to a geographical location, an animal, an individual or group of people, and which is also pronounceable and related to the disease," he explained. More than 44,000 confirmed cases of the new virus have been reported worldwide, including 393 outside of China, in two dozen countries. "With 99% of cases in China, this remains very much an emergency for that country, but one that holds a very grave threat for the rest of the world," Tedros said.