The World Health Organization has given the new coronavirus an official name: Covid-19.
“Covi” is short for coronavirus and the “d” designates it as a disease. The “19” refers to the virus emerging in 2019.
The Covid-19 distinguishes the new disease from the large family of other coronaviruses, some of which cause the common cold.
Health officials report more than 45,000 cases of Covid-19 have been reported thus far, and 1,116 people have died from the disease, the overwhelming majority in China’s Hubei province, home to the city of Wuhan, epicenter of the outbreak.
The WHO has declared the outbreak a global public health emergency. Cases have been reported in several countries, including 13 in the U.S. The disease causes respiratory illness and pneumonia.