In a bid to avoid stigmatizing any country for detecting and reporting variants, the World Health Organization decides to rename variants first detected in countries like the UK, South Africa, India, and Brazil.
GENEVA — The WHO has announced a new naming system for variants of Covid-19 where Greek letters will be used to refer to variants.
The UK variant is labeled Alpha, the South African Beta, the variant that originate from Brazil Gamma, and the Indian as Delta.
The WHO says this is to simplify discussions and help remove some stigma from the names. The letters will refer to both variants of concern, and variants of interest. A full list of names has been published on the WHO website.
However, the Greek letter label will not replace the existing scientific names of the variants. In case more than 24 variants are officially identified, the system runs out of Greek letters, a new naming program will be announced, says WHO Covid-19 technical lead Maria Van Kerkhove. (RA/Headline PH)