Tuesday, 31 January 2023

WHO recommends new name for monkeypox disease

29 November 2022 | News

WHO will adopt the term mpox in its communications, and encourages others to follow these recommendations

image credit- science photo library

image credit- science photo library

Following a series of consultations with global experts, the World Health Organisation (WHO) will begin using a new preferred term “mpox” as a synonym for monkeypox. Both names will be used simultaneously for one year while “monkeypox” is phased out.

Assigning names to new and, very exceptionally, to existing diseases is the responsibility of WHO under the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) and the WHO Family of International Health Related Classifications through a consultative process which includes WHO Member States.

WHO, in accordance with the ICD update process, held consultations to gather views from a range of experts, as well as countries and the general public, who were invited to submit suggestions for new names.

Based on these consultations, and further discussions with WHO’s Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO recommends that the synonym mpox will be included in the ICD-10 online in the coming days. It will be a part of the official 2023 release of ICD-11, which is the current global standard for health data, clinical documentation and statistical aggregation.

The issue of the use of the new name in different languages was extensively discussed.  The preferred term mpox can be used in other languages.

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