Fact Check: Acronym 'COVID-19' has nothing to do with vaccination certificates or AI
The claim: COVID-19 stands for 'Certification of Vaccination Identification by Artificial Intelligence'
For months, social media has been flooded with misinformation about the new coronavirus, including speculation about what its name, COVID-19, means.
False claims about the name started circulating – and were debunked – earlier this year but have recently resurfaced.
One Facebook post claims that COVID-19 is an abbreviated form of "Certificate of identification of vaccination with artificial intelligence."
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What does 'COVID-19' mean?
Originally, the new coronavirus was referred to as "2019 novel coronavirus” or “2019-nCoV."
In February, the World Health Organization gave the coronavirus disease a name – COVID-19.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "In COVID-19, "CO" stands for "corona," "VI" for "virus," and "D" for disease." The 19 is the year it was discovered, 2019.
The director-general of the WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said in a post on Twitter, "Having a name matters to prevent the use of other names that can be inaccurate or stigmatizing."
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Our rating: False
The claim in the post has been rated FALSE. The disease caused by the new coronavirus is formally known as COVID-19. This does not stand for "Certificate of identification of vaccination with artificial intelligence."
Our fact check sources:
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
- The World Health Organization, Naming the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the virus that causes it
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Our fact check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.