Academy Newsletter

Published: 11/05/2021

From the President’s Desk

We are excited to announce that the National Congress will go ahead this year on 13-14th August 2021. The Congress will be fully virtual with state-of-the-art software and organization provided by Scatterlings. The programme is being finalized by Prof Indiran Govender and his committee at University of Pretoria.

The theme will be “Primary Health Care in the Era of the COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond”. As the Congress is fully virtual the registration fees will be less than usual, and it should be easier for people to participate. We look forward to seeing you there.

For more details and to register, visit us on


Bid for WONCA World 2025

The Academy has re-started preparations to bid for the WONCA World Conference to be held in Cape Town at the Cape Town International Convention Centre in 2025.
For more information on WONCA, visit the website.

World Family Doctor Day

World Family Doctor Day (FDD) – 19th May – was first declared by WONCA in 2010 and it has become a day to highlight the role and contribution of family doctors and primary care teams in healthcare systems around the world.
This celebration is the perfect opportunity to acknowledge the central role of Family Doctors in the delivery of personal, comprehensive and continuing health care for all patients. It’s also a chance to celebrate the progress being made in Family Medicine and the special contributions of primary care teams globally. We are now thrilled to announce this year’s theme: Building the Future with Family Doctors!.
Read the full article here.

New Medical Student Membership

New Medical Student Membership
The Academy has created a new category of membership for medical students. We hope that medical students interested in Family Medicine and Primary Health Care will join the Academy and make connections with the discipline. This is also an opportunity to raise the visibility of Family Medicine with undergraduates and encourage them to see a future in the discipline. Medical schools may even want to create societies or special interest groups in Primary Health Care or district health services.
Click here to register for the Student Membership.

New SAMA Representation

Prof Shadrick Mazaza has stepped down as our representative on the South African Medical Association national council and we are grateful to him for being a voice for family medicine and particularly private practice with SAMA. One of our new council members, Dr Sizeka Maweya, has taken over the role and will represent in the future. As a former president of the SAMA Dr Maweya is well connected and will understand the structure and processes.

Advocacy with the private sector medical aids

Prof Shadrick Mazaza was also instrumental in advocating for Family Medicine with medical aid organisations and was very successful in his negotiations with Discovery Health. We are fortunate that Dr Sheena Mathew has agreed to take on this role. Dr Mathew is a Family Physician in private practice in Cape Town and a part-time lecturer in Family Medicine at the University of Cape Town.

Council sets goals for the next 3-years

The new national council met in February 2021 and did strategic planning for the next 3-years. The following goals were set:

  • To increase total membership of the Academy by 50%.
  • To increase CPD offered by the Academy that is relevant to the profession and aligned with HPCSA regulations.
  • Continue to provide efficient, effective, and timely accreditation of CPD and increase our share of the accreditation marketplace.
  • Develop support to and collaboration between family physicians working in districts where this is needed.
  • To clarify the purpose of and maintain the current strategic partnerships as well as build new partnerships with selected independent practitioner associations.
  • To improve the pass rate in the Part A FCFP examination to 60% or more.
  • To support the implementation of internship training in Family Medicine and Primary Care.
  • To influence the new national human resources for health policy and ensure appropriate planning for family physicians and family medicine.
  • To engage with the national department on the planning, implementation and communication regarding NHI for primary health care and district health services.
  • To advocate for the strengthening of district health systems (e.g., inputs, service delivery).
  • To advocate for further recognition of family physicians in the private sector medical aids.
  • To increase attendance at our National Family Practitioners Congress (by 50%) and ensure a hybrid, financially viable and relevant Congress.
  • To bid for and hopefully obtain the WONCA World Conference for 2025 and deliver a successful conference.
  • To increase CiteScore for the South African Family Practice Journal to >1.0.
  • To develop more material on CPD in the Journal for clinical skills and procedures.
  • To develop multimedia material that enhances the published content in the Journal e.g., podcasts, videos, webinars.

South African Family Practice Journal

SAAFP members have free access. The latest South African Family Practice e-book is now available to our members. You are invited to follow this link to the SAAFP website and then log-in with your username and password in order to access the e-book. We have also uploaded a PDF version that you can download and read offline on your device. All the previous articles remain available online at


Your art can appear on the cover page of the 2021 eBook parts of the South African Family Practice! We are inviting members and readers to submit their art – whether it is a photo of their artwork, a photograph taken or any other media. The artwork should say something about family practice, family medicine or primary care. This is an opportunity to share your experiences with your colleagues and the wider Southern African primary care community. The editorial team will decide on the final selection. We may also approach you to use your art in the social media postings of the SAAFP and SAFP journal.

Please visit the website for more details and how to submit your art.

Latest Journal Articles

“The contribution of family physicians to African health systems – A call for short reports” Editorial from PHCFM editor, Bob Mash
Click here to read

Demographic stratification of Type 2 diabetes and comorbidities in district healthcare in KwaZulu-Natal
Lauren Chetty, Nalini Govender, Ganesan M. Govender, Poovendhree Reddy
Click here to read

Related article
How well do we teach the primary healthcare approach? A case study of health sciences course documents, educators and students at the University of Cape Town Faculty of Health Sciences.
African Journal of Health Professions Education. 2021 Apr 8;13(1):83-92.
Click here to read

Rural Doctor’s Association of Southern Africa

Rural Onboarding: A 6 week orientation for clinicians was held 8 Feb – 22 March 2021. The program was heavily orientated towards doctors and clinical associates, with some sessions also useful to rehab, pharmacists, dentists, etc. The program had a total of 14 Zoom webinars of which 11 were uploaded to YouTube.

Earn all your CEU’s free of charge each year

All paid up SAAFP members have access to the print CPD activities in the South African Family Practice journal as well as it’s online CPD courses. With the collaboration of AOSIS eCPD all SAAFP members also have free, unlimited access to eCPD’s

Scrubs for members of the Academy – Be proud to be a part of the Family Physician Family!

We now offer you opportunity to purchase scrubs with the SA Academy of Family Physicians logo on. This will assist colleagues in identifying the doctor in front of them as a specialist Family Physician (or registrar) and it will also increase public awareness of the important work Family Physicians do. To purchase your scrubs please visit our website and complete the order form

Keep well and stay safe.

Prof Bob Mash
SAAFP President

Family Physicians logo[transparent]

Promote optimal health for the people in Southern Africa through advocacy, support and the development of the primary health care team, and the establishment of an equitable, humane and integrated district health care system.

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