The International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations (IFMSA) was founded in 1951 as an organization of medical students, for medical students ,and by medical students. For more than 60 years, the federation has not only been a dynamic platform of opportunities for the future physicians but has also served as their voice at the international level.
IFMSA is the world’s oldest and largest independent organization representing associations of medical students internationally. It currently maintains 136 National Member Organizations from more than 126 countries and areas with over one million students represented worldwide. IFMSA is recognized as a non-governmental organization within the United Nations system and the World Health Organization, and also works with the World Medical Association.
IFMSA was created to impact the world and to empower its members in taking their vision and ideas and making them a reality. IFMSA has inspired generations of medical students to develop the leadership abilities and skills to take on challenges and to improve the world around them in an early yet crucial period of their career. Engaging in IFMSA encourages both professional and personal collaborations irrespective of geographical, social, cultural, religious, racial, sexual, and political differences. As a result, future doctors are becoming more culturally aware and sensitive physicians.
The IFMSA experience shows students that they are not merely passive subjects in a rapidly globalizing world but rather valuable individuals with a potentially powerful role to play in global health. IFMSA hence offers medical students a taste of the real and pressing health issues worldwide, and help them learn that their idealistic goals can be achieved with readily attainable knowledge and commitment.
In IFMSA, the emphasis is placed on students returning to their local environments with new ideas and the skills to implement them. As the doctors of tomorrow and future leaders of health, we feel confident that our students will carry this spirit with them throughout their professional lives so that they positively impact the communities they serve.