WGS 2024: Qatar’s public health chief named Best Minister

Dr. Hanan Al Kuwari is esteemed for her wide-ranging healthcare initiatives
WGS 2024: Qatar’s public health chief named Best Minister
Dr. Hanan Al Kuwari is the public health minister of Qatar

Recognizing her invaluable contributions to healthcare, the World Government Summit (WGS) 2024 conferred the Best Minister Award to Dr. Hanan Al Kuwari. She is Qatar’s minister of public health, a position she has held since 2016.

His Highness Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, First Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, presented the award on February 12.

WGS 2024 is currently taking place in Dubai and will conclude tomorrow. 

Healthcare milestones

The WGS Best Minister Award has four focus areas. It includes socio-economic impact, innovation impact, resilience and future-readiness, and good governance and integrity. 

A press release by the Dubai media office emphasized that Dr. Al Kuwari’s accomplishments “align closely” with the said focus areas. One of her remarkable milestones is the March 2022 launch of the World Health Organization (WHO) office in Qatar. The presence of the WHO office in the country bolsters Qatar’s national health objectives. Moreover, it is pivotal in improving the health sector in the broader region.

Underscoring innovation, the health minister also led an initiative that launched the games app called GenMove. The app uses Artificial Intelligence (AI)-powered movement tracking technology to provide children and teenagers with a vigorous video game experience.

Dr. Al Kuwari demonstrated resilience and future readiness by leading the Public Health Ministry of Qatar in addressing COVID-19 concerns. Her office’s efforts include launching a dedicated hotline and offering virtual services for better access. The ministry also provided home delivery of medicine.

In 2022, Qatar also became the first country to have its municipalities awarded the Healthy City status by the WHO. This shows Dr. Al Kuwari’s — and Qatar’s — dedication to improving health services, aligning with the award’s good governance and integrity focus area.

Read: WGS 2024: Mohammed bin Rashid meets Prime Minister of Qatar


Honoring exemplary ministers

According to WGS, “the Best Minister Award commends the extraordinary work of government ministers at demonstrating excellence in the public sector and their design and implementation of successful, scalable and sustainable initiatives for socio-economic advancement of their citizens.” The award is organized by WGS in collaboration with PwC Middle East.

The nomination and assessment process involves identifying ministers who have implemented impactful initiatives in the past 18 months, using both primary and secondary sources for longlisting. This is followed by due diligence and criteria-based assessments for shortlisting. 

A panel, comprising top government officials and C-suite executives, judges shortlisted candidates based on innovation (40 percent), impact and inclusivity (25 percent), continuity and feasibility (20 percent) and presentation (15 percent).

Nominations hail from the WGS’ “Countries of Focus.” According to its website, these “constitute the countries falling in the top four global macro and socio-economic aggregated indices.” The indices include Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index, World Governance Indicators, Human Development Index and Happiness Index.

Past awardees include Australia’s Environment Minister Greg Hunt (2016), Senegal’s Health Minister Awa Marie Coll Seck (2017), Indonesia’s Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati (2018) and Afghanistan’s Health Minister Dr. Fayrouz Al-Din Fayrouz (2019). Most recent awardees include Uruguay’s Economy and Finance Minister Azucena María Arbeleche (2022) and Sierra Leone’s Basic and Senior Secondary Education Minister Dr. David Moinina Sengeh (2023). 

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