College of Family Medicine Pakistan : A Brief History
Advancements in medical science
After World War II, the phenomenal advancement of science and technology has made it possible for us to live in the jet and moon age. Medical Science has had its lion’s share in this scientific progress by the conquest of major causes of disease, by prolonging life, transplantation of organs and providing unbelievably quick relief from pain and suffering. But also at the same time in its wake we are posed with other serious problems like pollution, population explosion, natural calamities, wars, malnutrition, industrial hazards, social and economic disparity and greater demand of community health facilities.There is also fast changing pattern of diseases and tremendous demand for health care by the sufferers. Family Medicine, the mother of all medical practice, similarly is also faced with multi-dimensional problems of prevention of disease, cure of ailments, and providing efficient health care to individuals and community. It is also involved in the creation of a healthy environment, fulfilling social obligations, and providing economic delivery of health.
In 1969, The Executive committee of the PMA Karachi branch appointed a steering committee with directive to establish a college of general practitioners on all Pakistan basis. On the auspicious date of 15th February 1972 the college was officially formed by a small band of selfless family physicians of Karachi. It was in the same year that this college was admitted as proud member of WONCA (World Organization of National Colleges / Academics of General Practitioners Family Physicians) during 5th world conference of general practitioners at Melbourne Australia.
The college has now its own constitution and is registered under the Society Act 1860. It is also expected to be shortly affiliated to PMA center to retain its independent functioning and remain an All Pakistan Organization. Its policy viz a viz PMA is that of complementing rather than competing it is an specialized agency of the national organization devoted to the scientific academic, social and economic well being of general practitioners. Only in a period of a year and half the activities of this college has created visible impact in medical society and has greatly improved the underdog status of general practitioners. Better cooperation and understanding among the profession as a whole has definitely emerged and a feeling of pride in profession is evident.
College of Family Medicine Pakistan was established mainly for the purpose of teaching and training family physicians through comprehensive continuing medical education/training programs in order to provide high quality primary health care in the community; and to make efforts for teaching family medicine at undergraduate level, and to promote it to the postgraduate specialty. To Achieve these Aims and
Objectives the College planned:-
To organize continuing medical education (CME) program’s for family physicians.
To promote family medicine in Pakistan through new chapters of the College.
To establish family medicine education at undergraduate and its specialization at postgraduate level.
Health Education of People.
In order to refresh and update the clinical knowledge and skill of family physicians for better patient care, the College has up-till now organized over one hundred CME program’s either independently or in collaboration with other hospitals and origination. These program’s were comprehensive, covering practically all the specialties of medical science, and were of various forms, such as, Refresher Course, “Hands-On” workshop, symposium, Seminars, Conferences etc.
Health Education supplies correct knowledge about diseases and advises on how to take the required preventive measure. It also provides guidance towards the steps necessary for the promotion of health. CFMP being aware of the importance of Health Education for health promotion and disease prevention had organized three “Health Mela’s” in (1976-1978-1982) of three days each at PMA House, Karachi to provide first hand information with demonstration and educate the people about health and illness. In each Health Mela there were about twenty stalls of different health and hygienic problems, such as, Breast feeding and weaning, mother and child health, air and water pollution, nutrition, sanitation, malaria, tuberculosis, diabetes, high blood pressure, family planning, communicable diseases, etc. On these occasion the College had published souvenir “Family Doctor” containing different articles on health education and were distributed free.