WHO renames monkeypox variants to avoid racism and discrimination

A group of experts convened by the World Health Organization (WHO) agreed new names for monkeypox virus variants, in order to avoid offending any cultural groupsocial, national, regional, professional or ethnic, and minimize any negative impact on trade, travel, tourism or animal welfare.

“Monkeypox virus was named after its first discovery in 1958, before current best practices for naming diseases were adopted and viruses. Similarly for the name of the disease it causes. The main variants were identified by the geographic regions where they were known to circulate,” the Organization stated in a statement. release aired this Friday, August 12.

The group, made up of experts in virology, evolutionary biology and representatives of various research institutions around the world, reached a consensus on the new nomenclature for virus variants that, according to the WHO, is in line with “best practices”.

The new nomenclature includes the old Congo Basin (Central African) variant as Clade one (I) and the old West African variant as Clade two II. Furthermore, it was agreed that Clade II consists of two subclades Clade IIa and Clade IIb, the latter primarily referring to the group of variants circulating heavily in the 2022 global outbreak.

Likewise, WHO is conducting an open consultation to find a new name for monkeypox. Proposals can be submitted by entering this link in the add proposals section.

It should be noted that in Mexico, 147 monkeypox infections have been confirmed in 18 states, according to the Weekly Technical Report on Epidemiological Surveillance of the Ministry of Health, released on August 9.

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