In each newsletter we will present a stakeholder – an organisation which in one way or the other is important to CAMbrella.

The International Federation of Anthroposophic Medical Associations (IVAA)

IVAA focuses primarily on safeguarding the legal status of anthroposophic medicine as an integrative medical system, on the availability of anthroposophic medicinal products (as a prerequisite for the anthroposophic medical approach), as well as on the accessibility of anthroposophic treatments including art therapies, eurythmy therapy, and other therapies belonging to the anthroposophic medical system.

Anthroposophic medicine is a holistic and salutogenetic approach to medicine focusing on strengthening the patient’s organism and individuality. The self-determination, autonomy and dignity of patients are central themes. Therapies are intended to enhance a patient’s capacities to heal, and include anthroposophic medicines as well as various art therapies like painting and sculpture therapy, music, singing and speech therapy, physiotherapy and massage, psychotherapy, curative education and social therapy – and eurythmy therapy, where special body movements are used for therapeutic purposes.

Based on the number of prescriptions it has been estimated that anthroposophic medicinal products are prescribed by more than 30,000 physicians in 21 of the 27 EU member states, as well as in Norway and Switzerland.

A global organisation

As an umbrella organisation, the IVAA represents and coordinates 31 national anthroposophic doctors’ associations in matters relating to political and legal affairs in Europe and at international level. In 2010 the IVAA has members in 15 EU member states, as well as in Norway and Switzerland and a further 13 countries worldwide. Anthroposophic doctors also practise in another 4 member states (Bulgaria, France, Hungary and Lithuania) and in several further countries worldwide. Currently there are about 4,800 trained anthroposophic doctors who are members of national associations of anthroposophic doctors. 

Safeguarding and accessibility

IVAA is an umbrella organisation for anthroposophic medical associations worldwide with regard to the representation of anthroposophic medicine in political and legal affairs at European and international level.

In particular, IVAA focuses on safeguarding:

1. The legal status of anthroposophic medicine as an integrative medical system

2. The availability of medicinal products on the market, necessary for the anthroposophic medical approach

3. The accessibility of the whole spectrum of anthroposophic treatments, including art therapies, eurythmy therapy, and many others belonging to the anthroposophic medical system

Furthermore, IVAA focuses on safeguarding pluralism in medicine with regard to:

1. The patients’ right to use the treatment of their choice

2. The physicians’ right to offer the best available treatment for their patients.

Cross-organisational cooperation

IVAA is engaged in political activities on behalf of anthroposophic medicine in the EU and in international institutions, it consults on educational, training and research issues in anthroposophic medicine, and it cooperates with other health organizations, especially in the CAM sector – in particular within the CAMDOC Alliance ( ). IVAA advocates plurality in medicine and democratic, patient oriented health systems. IVAA is a founding member and supports the activities of the NGO ELIANT (European Alliance of Initiatives for Applied Anthroposophy, ).

Text: Jesper Odde Madsen
Source: IVAA

Further information

IVAA International Federation of Anthroposophic Medical Associations
Rue du Trône 194
B-1050 Bruxelles

Phone: +32 2 644 00 20

Address in the Swiss Registry of Associations:

Internationale Vereinigung anthroposophischer Ärztegesellschaften IVAA
Rüttiweg 45
CH-4143 Dornach