CICIAMS has been in existence since July 1933, when ,after a meeting at Basel,Switzerland,1928 several Catholic Nurse Associations met again at Lourdes, France for the first International Catholic Nurses Conference attended by 868 nurses from 10 nations and selected founder members of CICIAMS created an international professional organisation for Catholic Nurses. The name CICIAMS is an acronym formed of the intial letter of each word of the French description of the organization :Comite International Catholique des Infirmieres et Assistantes Medico-Sociales. Sr Marie d'Airoles, the founder of the French Catholic nurses organization was a prominent key worker in the setting up of the new CICIAMS international organization. The first presidency and secretariat of CICIAMS were estabished in France .
As the organization soon began to flourish way beyond the original expectations of its founder members formal links were established with Rome.In 1947 CICIAMS became a member of ICO The International Catholic Organization Conference .
Since 1947 CICIAMS has also become a member of , or had representation for, at least 9 other International Organisations such as WHO, UNESCO, UNICEF and ILO . CICIAMS holds an international conference every 4 years , hosted by a member country, to discuss Catholic/Christian and medical ethics and share ideas and experiences of Catholics nurses in a changing world.
There are now more than 60 member countries divided into 5 Regional Secretariats:
1.Africa - English speaking regions
2.Africa - French speaking regions.
The International Secretariat is currently based at
CICIAMS GENERAL SECRETARIAT, Palazzo San Calisto (Piazza San Calisto 16), 00120, Vatican City, Phone: +390669887372
CICIAMS collaborates with the Pontifical Council for Health Care Workers, Pontifical Council of the Family and Pontifical Council of the Laity.
Our Ecclesiastical Adviser is Reverend Father Ken Slayman MM. .
Our Aims are:
• To unite Catholic Nurses in promoting their technical skills in accordance with Christian principles.
• To co-operate in the development of nursing and other medico-social issues.
• To be witnesses of Christian values in international agencies.
• To undertake all possible means to realise these aims.
Through these aims CICIAMS requires Catholic Nurses to be seen to join together in promoting a Christian , moral approach to care.