WONCA is an unusual, yet convenient acronym comprising the first five initials of the World Organization of National Colleges, Academies and Academic Associations of General Practitioners/Family Physicians. WONCA’s short name is World Organization of Family Doctors.
The World Organization of Family Doctors (WONCA) is a not-for-profit organization and was founded in 1972 by member organizations in 18 countries. WONCA now has 118 Member Organizations in 131 countries and territories with membership of about 500,000 family doctors and more than 90 per cent of the world’s population. This includes eight organizations in collaborative relations with WONCA. There are some 21 members in the Academic membership category, which consists of Academic Departments of Family Medicine. Over 800 individual general practitioners and family physicians have chosen to join WONCA in their own right.
WONCA is governed by a World Council that meets once every three years just before the world conference. The Council comprises the representatives of member organizations and the officers of WONCA.
WONCA represents and acts as an advocate for its constituent members at an international level where it interacts with world bodies such as the World Health Organization, with whom it has official relations as a non-governmental organization and is engaged in a number of collaborative projects. The WONCA World Secretariat has transferred from Singapore to Bangkok, in November 2012.