The World Health Organisation (WHO) has recently asked the public to give their suggestions for a new name for the monkeypox virus.
WHO spokeswoman Fadela Chaib said the organisation wants to find a name that is "not stigmatising".
She explained: "It's very important we find a new name for monkeypox because this is best practice not to create any offence to an ethical group, a region, a country, an animal etc."
According to Reuters, WHO has received a number of submissions for the new name from members of the public.
One of the suggested names is "Poxy McPoxface", submitted by someone named Andrew Yi, Reuters reported.
The name is a reference to "Boaty McBoatface", which won the poll conducted by UK's Natural Environment Research Council after it asked the public to name its newest research ship.
Another name that was submitted to WHO's website is "TRUMP-22".
According to Reuters, the person who submitted the name said that it stands for "Toxic Rash of Unrecognised Mysterious Provenance of 2022".
A popular name submission is "Mpox".
It was submitted by Samuel Miriello, director of a men's health organisation RÉZO.
Miriello told Reuters: "When you remove the monkey imagery, people seem to understand more quickly that there's an emergency that needs to be taken seriously."
Will not come up with "ridiculous" name
WHO has yet to make a decision on the new name for monkeypox.
However, as reported by Reuters, WHO said it would decide among the submitted names "according to their scientific validity, their acceptability, their pronounceability (and) whether they can be used in different languages".
WHO added that it will "not come up with a ridiculous name".
The organisation has already renamed the monkeypox virus variants from African regions to Roman numerals.
📌 WHO names #monkeypox variants as Clades I, IIa & IIb. Experts in pox virology, evolutionary biology & representatives of research institutes from across the globe reviewed the phylogeny & nomenclature of known & new monkeypox virus variants or cladeshttps://t.co/2KVxkVqxCr pic.twitter.com/Y1gqVkRhKX— World Health Organization (WHO) (@WHO) August 13, 2022
Assigning new names to existing diseases is the responsibility of WHO under the International Classification of Diseases and the WHO Family of International Health Related Classifications (WHO-FIC).
Top image via Unsplash.