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WONCA Classification Committee
and copyrights

Version française


Marc Jamoulle, Juillet 1997
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The ICPC and its translations
Other tools tested or developed by the Committee
Publication of ICPC 2


During the Edinburgh meeting in september 96, the Wonca Classification Committee (WCC) has given recomandations concerning copyrights, royalties, maintain of the integrity of Classification tools and concerning the identification of the owners of ICPC and its translations.

ICPC, (International Classification of Primary Care) and its translations in both the printed and electronic versions are WONCA byproducts. Any question about ICPC use and copyrights has to be directed to

Professeur Charles-Bridges Webb,
President of the Wonca CLassification Committee,
9 Appian Way, Burwood NSW 2134 Australia
Tel : 00 61 2 9745 4014 Fax 00 61 2 9744 2585
E-mail :

However, as WONCA and its Classification Committee wish to see ICPC used as widely as possible, it will assist anyone wanting to gain access to it.

Any use of ICPC and its translations is free of charge. The Committee wants to guarantee the diffusion of the tool to all the general practitionners and family doctors in the world. Researchs conducted by family doctors or epidemiologists are preferably to be mentioned to the WICC or their delegate.

In case of ICPC commercial or public use, registration by the Committee is mandatory. In order to maintain the integrity of the tool, the source of the ICPC tabular list has to be mentioned to the Committee.

The Classification Committee has to be identified as the author and owner of the tool in ICPC referring to publications or software. Reference to the CISP-Club as to be linked to the WICC in case of French publications.

The Classification and its translations are not available through Internet. Files published in the CISP-Club web site are for educational purpose only and can't be copied.

The only way the original WONCA ICPC can be obtained without breaching copyright is through the purchase of books or discs which contain the WONCA ICPC.

The following book contains a lot of informations about ICPC use and a floppy disk with the translations in nine European languages and a multilingual file named "Multi language layer"

Lamberts H, Wood M, Hofmans-Okkes I. The International Classification of Primary Care in the European Community, with a multi language layer. Oxford Medical Publication, Oxford 1993
Vendors have been licensed by WONCA to include ICPC in their computer programmes. For example, ICPC has been licensed to the Family Medicine Research Unit at the University of Sydney to be included in its product ICPC-PLUS, which is available commercially.

The ICPC and its translations

Concerning the ICPC French translation, named Classification Internationale des Soins Primaires (CISP), the CISP-Club, Club of the ICPC French users represents the interests of the WICC . Correspondance for the CISP-Club has to be adressed to Dr Humbert, Cisp-Club secretary.

WONCA has given permission to several groups to translate ICPC into other languages. Such translations of ICPC are copyright. Permission to translate ICPC is obtained through the Dr Wes Fabb Chief Executive Officer of WONCA

Other tools tested or developed by the Committee

Beside ICPC and Classification field, the Committee has contributed to the development of other valuable tools for research and evaluation in general practice/family medicine ;
  • An International Glossary for General/family practice (1995)
  • The health outcome measurement COOP/WONCA charts (1994)
  • The Duke Severity of Illness Checklist (DUSOI) (1997)
For further details, please consult the document on the story of the WICC . Those tools can be used in research and in clinical care. Permission to use COOP/WONCA Charts specifically exclude the right to distribute, reproduce or share them in any form of commercial purposes.

Publication of ICPC 2

The first edition (Oxford Medical Publication, 1987) of the WONCA ICPC book is out of print. A second edition has been prepared since five years and publication is expected early in 1998 under the name of ICPC 2.

The Committee has already decided that ICPC 2 should not be free of charge and shall put a copyright on ICPC 2. In due time the it shall indicate the process for the payement of the rights and the identification of the users.

The copyright of ICPC, both in hard copy and in electronic form, is owned by WONCA. This policy relates to the electronic version and has the following aims.


  1. To allow the WONCA Classification Committee to promote, distribute, and support ICPC-2, and further develop it as the best classification for primary care.
  2. To maintain international comparability of versions of ICPC-2.
  3. To obtain feedback and maintain a clearing house of international experiences with ICPC-2.
  4. To achieve recognition of WONCA's initiative and expertise in classification.
  5. To promote understanding of appropriate links between ICPC-2 and other classification and coding systems, particularly ICD-10.
  6. To encourage use of ICPC-2 rather than inhibit it with restrictions.
  7. To obtain financial support to enable achievement of these aims and allow the work of the WONCA Classification Committee to continue and expand.


  1. The electronic version of ICPC-2 should be made available in as many countries as possible.
  2. Versions involving additions, translations, or alterations should be made with input from and agreement of the WONCA Classification Committee if they are to be regarded as official WONCA versions.
  3. WONCA should licence appropriate organisations to promote and distribute electronic versions of ICPC-2 in countries, regions, and language groups.
  4. Licence fees may be charged through these organisations to the end users and collected by the distributors for WONCA. The fees will be set by negotiation and may be waived when there are advantages to WONCA by so doing, such as when use is for research or development.

Mails of the

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To contact the Cisp-Club:

.M. Jamoulle
Rue Frère Orban
B-6040 Jumet( Charleroi)
J. Humbert
9, rue du 8 Mai
F-85230 Beauvoir sur mer
tél.+32 71 37 14 12 (dom.)
+32 71 28 55 77 (bur.)
+33 2 51 49 45 51 (dom.)
+33 2 51 68 70 23 (bur.)
fax+32 71 28 55 70+33 2 51 68 76 05

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Updated Sept. 12, 1997 by Marc Jamoulle & Ir. Marc Meurrens ()
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