How can we create a happier, healthier world? Expo previews latest innovations, technologies transforming global health and wellness

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  • Health and Wellness Week hosts global experts and Expo International Participants
  • Topics include women’s role in health, telemedicine, building happier communities
  • Live-streamed event is latest Expo-led thematic week to address key global issues

Dubai: What innovations and technologies are transforming the way communities address global health concerns, and how can we harness these to build happier, healthier societies? 

These questions were at the core of Health and Wellness Week, the latest in a series of Expo 2020 Dubai-led thematic weeks that seek to address some of the greatest challenges facing humanity and explore solutions that benefit us all.

Held on 2 February in collaboration with Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences (MBRU), the virtual live-streamed event brought together International Participants, partners and renowned global experts for panel discussions and Q&As.

Looking at how the COVID-19 pandemic has tested our interconnected world, our health systems and society as a whole, sessions – now available on demand – explored the opportunity offered by the UAE and Expo 2020 to come together to design a healthier and happier global society.

Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy, UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General, Expo 2020 Dubai, said: “Health and wellness are fundamental drivers of human development, yet they are under threat – and we must respond. The fierce test of the last 12 months has shown us that we must all come together to re-design what tomorrow could and must look like.

“Our Expo later this year will be the moment in which all stakeholders, at every level, can come together and collectively re-create an inclusive, global health system – one that will allow access to healthcare for communities and is preventative and protective of all, rather than some.” 

Dr Reem Al Gurg, Director of Strategy and Institutional Excellence and Assistant Professor, Health Policy, MBRU, said: “COVID-19 has taught us not only how important healthcare is, but how informed decision making and evidence-based science is a crucial component for any society’s protection and prosperity. As an institution that highly values excellence, connectivity and giving, we are proud to join hands with Expo 2020 Dubai to work towards a healthier and happier society.”

Speakers also included Professor Shekhar Saxena, Practice of Global Mental Health, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and Philomena Raftery, Technical Officer, World Health Organization Health Emergencies Programme in Cambodia.

Sessions included a discussion with representatives from Hungary about how the country’s abundant mineral-rich springs can be used to treat a range of health conditions, spotlighting our relationship with the natural world. Another celebrated female frontline health workers, while exploring opportunities to tackle gender discrimination, bias and inequalities within the health sector.

Touching on Expo 2020’s health and wellness efforts, including its worker wellness strategy and response to COVID-19, the event wrapped up with a World Majlis – moderated by Helen Farmer, Senior Presenter at Arabian Radio Network (ARN) – on how to build healthier and happier communities in a post-pandemic era.

Global health and wellness is one of the key challenges Expo seeks to address by bringing people, communities and nations together to build bridges, enable action and inspire solutions, and Expo is already supporting a number of healthcare-related innovations and projects across the world.

These include MeeTwo – a UK-based mental health app that helps teenagers talk about difficult issues – and Coolar, whose electricity independent, water-based cooling technology enables off-grid health facilities in developing regions to reliably store lifesaving medicines and vaccines.    Both are supported under Expo 2020’s global innovation and partnership programme, Expo Live.

They also include the USD 3 Janma kit from India-based ayzh, spotlighted under Expo’s Global Best Practice Programme, containing simple tools to equip healthcare workers with the essential supplies, skills, and confidence to provide a clean and safe birth. 

Health and Wellness Week was the sixth in a series of 10 thematic weeks – launched in October 2020 with Space Week – that brings together influential policymakers, thought leaders, Expo participants and the public to help shape the thought-provoking content and conversations taking place during Expo 2020 Dubai.

Running from 1 October 2021 until 31 March 2022, Expo 2020 will seek collaborative solutions to the world’s most pressing issues – including weeks dedicated to the Global Goals, Climate and Biodiversity, Knowledge and Learning, and Water – to help shape a better, more sustainable future for all.

About Expo 2020 Dubai:

From 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022, Expo 2020 Dubai will bring the world together in a spirit of hope and optimism and with a shared purpose towards solving some of our greatest challenges.

  • It will showcase the greatest innovations, breakthroughs and ideas from around the planet, enabling action towards a better world under its theme of ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’ 
  • Expo 2020 will be an endless journey of discovery as more than 200 participants – including nations, multilateral organisations, businesses, and educational institutions, as well as millions of visitors – harness their collective power to change the world for the better
  • Expo 2020’s sub-themes of OpportunityMobility and Sustainability will inspire visitors to make a conscious effort to think and live differently
  • An entertaining global celebration with something for everyone, Expo 2020 will wow visitors with daily events, showcasing the best of technology, creativity and culture, while F&B outlets will feature cuisine from around the world
  • The first World Expo to take place in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA), located on a 4.38 sqkm site adjacent to Al Maktoum International Airport in Dubai South 
  • Built with a long-term legacy in mind, the Expo site is an example of innovation in action and will transform into District 2020, a blueprint for human-centric, smart and sustainable cities of the future, after Expo 2020 closes its doors

How to cover Expo 2020 Dubai in person at event time or report on the event remotely

To attend Expo 2020 or cover Expo 2020 remotely using content and assets generated by Expo, you must be accredited. 

To kick off your journey with Expo 2020, please ensure that you:

1. Register to access our Media Information System, Tawassul at https://media.expo2020dubai.com.

Tawassul is regularly updated, providing the latest content assets, including press releases, photographs, audio and video, the electronic media kit, and information on broadcast and photography operations. It also provides you with important information and updates on facilities and services such as media accreditation, visa information for international accredited media, and permits. Access to other media-related systems (Media Asset Management System and Media Bookings System), which will be launched in Q2 2021, will only be permitted to accredited media (see below). Information about these systems can be found on Tawassul.

2. Once registered, submit an Expo 2020 Media Accreditation expression of interest. 

Within this expression of interest, please appoint an Accreditation Liaison Officer (ALO) from within your organisation who will act as the single point of contact with Expo 2020 for media accreditation. Following this, approved media organisations will be provided login details and instructions for the accreditation system to enable them to submit applications.

About World Expos:

In 1851 the Crystal Palace was the centrepiece of London’s Great Exhibition – the first World Expo. It celebrated the man-made industrial wonders of a rapidly changing world. Architecture, contents and a theme, ‘Industry of All Nations’, were combined to create a big idea of nations meeting nations in shared technological and commercial progress. In more recent years, participants in World Expos, including governments, international organisations and companies, have gathered to find solutions to universal challenges and to promote their achievements, products, ideas, innovations, their national brand, and their nations as destinations for tourism, trade and investment. 

World Expos are held under the auspices of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), the intergovernmental organisation responsible for overseeing and regulating international exhibitions (‘Expos’) and for fostering their core values of Education, Innovation and Cooperation. Today, four types of Expos are organised under the BIE’s auspices: World Expos, Specialised Expos, Horticultural Expos and the Triennale di Milano.