The UN health agency this week announced that “COVID-19” will be the official name of the deadly virus from China, saying the disease represented a very grave threat for the world but there was a realistic chance of stopping it. We now have a name for the disease and it’s COVID-19,” World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters in Geneva.
Tedros said that “co” stands for “corona”, “vi” for “virus” and “d” for “disease”, while “19” was for the year, as the outbreak was first identified on December 31.
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 v using animal species in the name can create confusion, such as in 2009 when H1N1 was popularly referred to as “swine flu”.
“We are not defenceless,” Tedros said, adding: “If we invest now… we have a realistic chance of stopping this outbreak.”
WHO sent an advance team to China this week for an international mission to examine the epidemic. Participants will also discuss the son to find the source of the virus, which is thought to have originated in bats and reached humans via other “intermediary” species as snakes or pangolins.