Expo 2020 Dubai: Upcoming events will focus on future pandemic preparedness and mental health – News

Visitors can also take part in a range of fitness activities during Health and Wellness Week

Photo: Expo 2020 Dubai

By Wam

Published: Thu 27 Jan 2022, 04:36 PM

The Covid-19 pandemic which has exposed the strengths and weaknesses of our global healthcare system will underpin much of the conversation at the upcoming Expo 2020 Dubai Health and Wellness Week.

Stakeholders from across the global health ecosystem will come together to highlight and advance towards resilient and inclusive healthcare systems.

The thematic week, which will be held from January 27 to February 2 and in association with the Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences (MBRU) and the World Health Organization (WHO), will explore the relationship between mental and physical well-being, and the role of quality access to healthcare and technology in reaching the last mile and building healthy societies.

The week will feature various on-site roundtables, including the Health and Wellness Business Forum on February 1 at the Dubai Exhibition Centre, Expo 2020.

Reem Al Hashimy, UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and CEO of Expo 2020 Dubai, said: “For us to be truly healthy, we must also be happy, because these two states of being are linked, deeply and inextricably.

“If we don’t come together to design an inclusive, crisis-proof global health system that transforms the way we access health care, strengthens our response to epidemics, and balances our physical and mental well-being, we cannot really overcome the challenges laid bare by the Covid-19 pandemic.

MBRU Vice Chancellor Dr Amer Sharif said: “Since COVID-19, our lives have been profoundly changed. It remains crucial to continue the conversation on global health infrastructure and to actively contribute to the global dialogue on how technology, medicine and sustainability can be leveraged to prevent future pandemics.

“We at MBRU are honored to have joined the Expo 2020 team and the WHO in supporting the development of this programme. Our role in Health and Wellness Week is a true illustration of our desire as an academic institution to contribute to the conversation on a global scale to achieve healthier societies.”


Keynote speakers for the week include the Hon. Mutahi Kagwe, Cabinet Secretary for Health, Kenya; Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Director General, World Trade Organization and former Minister of Finance, Nigeria; Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, chief scientist at the World Health Organization, pediatrician and world-renowned expert on tuberculosis and HIV; and Stephen Donnelly TD, Minister of Health, Ireland.

Throughout Expo 2020, visitors will be inspired to take care of their own health and well-being through a range of fitness activities including yoga, Pilates and Zumba.

Jennifer C. Burleigh