Description: AfMA was established in 2004 and currently involves the following countries: Angola, Botswana, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa, Swaziland, Seychelles, Zambia, Zimbabwe. Ultimately it is envisaged that all the countries and customs territories of Africa will be members of AfMA. History The physicians of Africa have for a long time expressed the need to have a representative body to act as its collective voice and to advocate for better health care for the people of the continent. It was recognised that there was a compelling need to establish an Africa structure of national medical associations that could organise health issues in the Africa region and participate actively in world health issues. Early in 2005, a group of dedicated medical leaders took the lead in realising this dream. The establishment of AfMA can be summarised as follows: In January 2005, medical leaders of nine African countries met in South Africa to discuss the establishment of a regional office of the World Medical Association (WMA). They agreed that health leadership in Africa should join forces to address common health problems of the continent and to play a strong advocacy role for the region at an international level. All participating countries signed a Memorandum of Understanding, which provided a broad framework of the organisation's activities. A legal entity (an Article 21 not-for-profit organisation registered in South Africa) has been registered to accommodate the establishment of AfMA. In July 2006, leaders from 11 African nations attended the first inaugural general meeting in South Africa to further develop and implement the activities of what is now known as the "Africa Medical Association (AfMA)". The official office-bearers were elected to serve until 2010. The Inaugural General Assembly was held October 2006 in Pilanesberg, South Africa. Countries represented included Namibia, Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Ghana, Nigeria, Mozambique and South Africa. Main objectives of AfMA AfMA works for the highest possible standards of ethical behaviour and care by physicians, at all times. While advancing the art and practice of medicine, it also acts as the representative voice for physicians and, where appropriate, patients. It influences policy, launches and participates in projects with the explicit goal of improving health care in Africa. Current Focus Areas Health Security Prevention of HIV / AIDS Strengthening of Health Care Systems The epidemic of chronic disease Human Resources for Health Patient Information & Communication Science & Technology Capacity - Africa Maternal Health Infant Nutrition Access to services, products, devices Leadership Development Capacity-building for NMAs
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