Monkeypox got a new name after people called it “racist”.

Caption: Monkeypox could be classified as an STI under the new WHO guidelines. Source: getty

“Monkeypox” will continue to be used while it is being phased out (Picture: Getty)

Monkeypox was renamed after concerns were raised that the original name was “racist”.

The World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed that the disease will now be known as “mpox”.

However, both terms will continue to be used while “monkey pox” is being phased out.

They said: “As the monkeypox outbreak spread earlier this year, racist and stigmatizing language was observed online, in other settings and in some communities, and reported to the WHO.

“Following a series of consultations with global experts, WHO will begin using a new preferred term ‘mpox’ as a synonym for monkeypox. Both names will be used simultaneously for one year while ‘monkey pox’ is phased out.’

Pressure for a new name for the disease began to mount after critics suggested that “monkeypox” was misleading since monkeys were not the original animal hosts.

A group of leading academics also wrote a position paper in June calling for a “neutral, non-discriminatory and non-stigmatizing” name, given the racist use of current terminology.

WHO is responsible for naming new diseases and renaming existing conditions only in “very exceptional” circumstances.

There have been more than 80,000 cases and 55 deaths worldwide (Image: Reuters)

There have been more than 80,000 cases and 55 deaths worldwide (Image: Reuters)

It comes after organizations decided to open the naming process to the public, which unsurprisingly Poxy McPoxface suggested.

This year’s outbreak was the first “community transmission” in the UK, with 68,000 people in England being vaccinated against the disease.

According to WHO data, there have been more than 80,000 cases and 55 deaths worldwide.

Up to this year, monkeypox spread mainly to groups of countries in wet and central Africa.

But last month the disease, first discovered in 1958 and named after the first animal to show symptoms, was declared a public health emergency.

Common signs of infection include the development of a new skin rash, fever, headache, muscle pain, fatigue, and swollen lymph nodes.

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Justin Scacco

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