The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that it will begin using a ‘new preferred term’ for monkeypox.
According to the world body, after consulting global experts, it will use ‘mpox’ as a synonym for monkeypox.
The WHO will use both names simultaneously for one year while it phases out ‘monkeypox’.
Human monkeypox was first identified in 1970 and named after the disease caused by the virus that was discovered in captive monkeys more than a decade before.
The WHO said when the outbreak of monkeypox expanded earlier this year, racist and stigmatising language surfaced online, in communities, and other settings.
Twenty-nine European countries have reported cases of the disease, along with Canada, Australia, and the United States, prompting massive demand for a vaccine to protect those most at risk.
In July, the WHO declared the virus a global health emergency amid a worldwide surge in people developing symptoms, including a high fever and skin lesions or rash.
However, global disease cases have been declining for several months now.