Status of Family Medicine Development

What is the status of Family Medicine (FM) development globally? In 2013-2014, a team of researchers answered this question through a systematic research approach, creating an interactive, expandable resource detailing data on all 194 World Health Organization-recognized countries. The map below is a product of this research

The researchers used a multi-phased strategy: 1) an electronic search and 2) key informant interview validation.

The first phase involved a structured search terminology, systematically assessing the following electronic resources: World Organization of Family Doctors (WONCA) website, PubMed, Google, Facebook, educational databases, World Health Organization (WHO) website, and World Bank website. The electronic search was designed to answer the following three questions for each country:
1. Does the country have an active postgraduate training program in FM/General Practice (GP) physically present in the country?
2. Does the countries health system (Ministry of Health or health governing body) recognize FM/GP training?
3. Is there an FM/GP Professional Society present in the country?

The goal of the project, which produced the map below, is to provide an up to date description of the country level status of postgraduate GP/FM type training and development using a systematic approach.

The second phase of the research involved validation of the electronically-collected information in order to improve the quality of the information. This was completed by reviewing the electronic data-set in semi-structured interviews with key informant such as, WONCA Regional Presidents and stakeholders with a regional knowledge of family medicine development and training.

Based on the validated information, the countries were classified into three levels, in accordance with the criteria (linked to the three questions from above):

Level 3: All three of the criteria identified in the country.
Three Criteria:
(1) Postgraduate FM/GP training in country
(2) Health system recognition of FM/GP
(3) Professional society present
 

Level 2: Either one or two of the criteria identified in the country.
Level 1: Zero of the criteria identified in the country.

This interactive map below is a visual representation of the country-level status of postgraduate GP/FM type training and development. The goal of is for this to be a dynamic resource, one that can be easily updated by the global family medicine community. We encourage you to click around, send us ideas, and keep this as accurately updated as possible. Thanks for your contribution!

 




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