World Health Organization Classifications in the African region

Newsletter of the WHO Family of International Classifications (WHO-FIC) Collaborating Centre for the Africa region

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Feedback from Annual WHO-FIC Meeting 2019: Join via Zoom on 13 November @ 14h00 (UTC+2)

The Annual WHO-FIC meeting and conference took place form 5-11 October in Banff, Canada. Debbie Bradshaw, Oluwatoyin Awotiwon, Soraya Maart and Warrick Sive from the Collaborating Centre attended the meeting. On 13 November at 1400 – 15:00 they will give feedback of the meeting via Zoom.


Click here to join the feedback session via Zoom.


Prepare for the feedback session by reading about the highlights


Delegates from AFRO region who attended the WHO-FIC Annual meeting in Banff, Canada. Back: Dr Warrick Sive (SA), Dr Hillary Kipruto (AFRO-WHO), Dr Anthony Ofuso (Ghana), Mr Samuel Cheburet (Kenya), Prof Soraya Maart (SA), Dr Oluwatoyin Awotiwon (SA), Ms Emmy Else Ndevaetela (Namibia), Mr Nenad Kostanjsek (WHO). Front: Prof Debbie Bradshaw (SA), Dr Robert Jakob (WHO).




ICHI Testing

Testing of the beta draft of ICHI, the International Classification of Health Interventions, is under way throughout the world.  Dr Lyn Hanmer, co-head of the Collaborating Centre, is the Field Trial Centre Coordinator for this region. 


Documentation and other resources for ICHI testing have been developed by WHO and the Collaborating Centre, and are made available to all testers.


The significant contributions of colleagues in multiple countries in our Region who have already participated in the testing are acknowledged and appreciated.


The testing period has been extended, so there is time for any colleagues who still wish to participate to register as testers.  Please send an email to so that an invitation can be initiated. Read more.



Capacity building in Nairobi

The WHO-FIC Collaborating Centre partnered with various other organisations to host the Second Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice for Africa conference that took place at the Amref International University, Nairobi, Kenya from July 30 to August 2 2019. The conference was a collaboration between the WHO Regional Office for Africa, the Africa Interprofessional Education Network (AfrIPEN), Sigma Theta Tau’s International Tau Lambda at-Large Chapter, Anglophone Africa APN Coalition, WONCA Africa, Amref International University and our collaborating centre.

The conference is driven by the conviction that concerted action to improve working together will effect change, enhance quality of care, ensure safety, and optimise deployment of human resources on the continent.


The collaborating centre contributed the following to the conference:

  • Pre-conference workshop: Interprofessional collaboration to improve cause of death statistics: Crucial to improve systems for health
  • ICF Facilitators’ Training course



Debbie Bradshaw, Stefanus Snyman and Lyn Hanmer represented the WHO-FIC Collaborating Centre at the Second Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice for Africa conference in Nairobi

Health professionals from South Africa, Saudi Arabia and Rwanda attended the ICF facilitators’ Training Course in Nairobi on 30 & 31 July 2019



4th International Symposium: ICF Education

Stefanus Snyman from the WHO-FIC Collaborating Centre for the African region helped to organise the 4th International Symposium: ICF Education that was held in Kuwait City on 6 & 7 April 2019. A multidisciplinary group of 80 persons from 29 nations in all 6 WHO regions attended the symposium. This unexpectedly large and diverse turn-out underscores the interest in the ICF and its implementation all around the world.

Four delegates from the Africa Region attended the 4th International Symposium: ICF Education in Kuwait (Mable Kekana, Rita Henn and Stefanus Snyman (South Africa) and Olekemi Audi (Nigeria).




Download annual report 2019

Colleagues associated with the WHO FIC collaborating centre in South Africa are continuing their activities in support of the development and maintenance of the WHO-FIC internationally in WHO-FIC network structures in the development, implementation and use of ICD, ICHI and ICF in Africa and in support of strengthening civil registration and vital statistics CRVS in the WHO African region.

Download a poster of the centre’s 2019 annual report to the WHO-FIC network.



Upcoming events:


Familiarise yourself with the planned WHO-FIC meetings in 2020


The WHO Family of International Classifications (WHO-FIC) is pivotal in delivering Universal Health Coverage in the African region. These classifications are the

  • International Classification for Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD)
  • International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF)
  • International Classification of Health Interventions (ICHI).

The WHO-FIC Collaborating Centre for the African region is hosted by the South African Medical Research Council in Cape Town, South Africa. The Centre supports the development, implementation and maintenance of the WHO-FIC across the region, and through the global WHO-FIC Network.

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