A Brief History of Family Medicine Development and Training in Iran (2005-2018)

Associate Professor, Department of Healthcare Management, School of Management and Medical Information Sciences, Health Management and Economics Research Center, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

Head of Danesh-e Tandorosti Institute, Isfahan, Iran AND Professor, Faculty Instructor, Energy Medicine University, California, USA

MSc Studentt, Department of Healthcare Management, School of Management and Medical Information Sciences, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

BSc Student, Department of Healthcare Management, School of Management and Medical Information, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran


Background: Health care systems in the world are continually modified to increase efficiency and effectiveness. In Iran, the Family Physician Program (FPP) was started in 2005 as one of the main policies of the ministry of health and was continued in the fourth and fifth national development plans. The aim of this study was to get acquainted with the history of FPP in Iran.

Methods: This was a narrative review conducted by studying the documents and articles related to the history of family physician (FP) development and training in Iran. The documents and articles were obtained from searching in databases such as Google Scholar, PubMed, Magiran, and Scientific Information Database (SID). Finally, 26 articles related to the purpose of the study were selected. Furthermore, the related contents of the FPP were extracted from the site of the Ministry of Health and the Iran Health Insurance.

Results: The FPP was first implemented in villages and small towns (population ≤ 20,000), and then, in larger cities (population = 20 to 50 thousand). The governors are currently concentrated on the borders of cities with basic health services. Launching the FPP in metropolitan areas is still a problem to be solved. In addition, physicians need to acquire the necessary skills to provide the desired service quality services to the population covered by them.

Conclusion: A brief history of the FPP in Iran shows dramatic changes over 13 years. The subjects to be considered in this program are the implementation of FPP in megacities after providing the required infrastructures such as electronic health records, the appropriate training of skillful FPs, and private sector participation in implementing the FPP.


  • Family medicine
  • Family physician program
  • Health system
  • Rural insurance

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22122/ijbmc.v5i2.122