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News Release

Health to Be Cornerstone of Annual Meeting 2013 Agenda

Georg Schmitt, Communications Department, Media, Tel.: +41 (0)22 869 1385, E-mail: georg.schmitt@weforum.org

  • Global Health and health systems will feature prominently at World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2013
  • UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, as well as several health ministers and more than 25 chief executives from the healthcare industry to attend
  • The socioeconomic impact of non-communicable diseases has contributed to making health an economic policy priority
  • Forum reports on Sustainable Health Systems and Workplace Wellness will be launched on 24 January at the Annual Meeting 2013 

Geneva, Switzerland, 03 January 2013 – The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2013, taking place in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, on 23-27 January, will feature several high-level events on health-related issues. Under the Meeting’s main theme, “Resilient Dynamism”, the health community will focus on the future of sustainable national health systems, workplace wellness and individual health.

Sustainable Health Systems

Scenarios for Sustainable Health Systems – a joint project of the World Economic Forum’s Health and Strategic Foresight experts in cooperation with McKinsey – look at the future of healthcare and health. The current debate on the future of health is often characterized by short-term thinking, entrenched positions and occurs on different sides of fault lines between various silos. While some reforms may provide relief in the short term, mostly through rationing and cost control, they do not necessary address the underlying drivers of healthcare supply inefficiencies or growing demand for services to bend the curve of proliferation of healthcare expenditure. Countries need to think long term, expand the group of responsible stakeholders and break from the status quo to embark on courageous transformation to sustainably deliver access to high-quality health services.

Over the past year, the World Economic Forum with its Partners engaged over 200 health system leaders, policy-makers and experts, aiming to provide a longer term and holistic analysis of sustainable health systems using the central question: What could health systems look like in 2040?

The results and recommendations will be published in the Sustainable Health Systems Report on Thursday 24 January 2013.

Workplace Wellness Alliance

Responding to a call for action of 20 CEOs in 2008, and launched by the World Economic Forum in 2010, today the Workplace Wellness Alliance (the Alliance) is a consortium of over 150 companies across nine industries working together towards improving health and well-being through the workplace. With a focus on data collection and knowledge-sharing the Alliance has carried out the most extensive data collection to date this year. In collaboration with FTI Consulting it has gathered metrics covering two million employees in 125 countries and taking a big step towards the development of a global baseline of employee health metrics. Ready to further scale up reach and impact, the Alliance will be transitioned to the Institute of Health and Productivity Management in Davos this year.

The Alliance will publish a report under the title “Making the Right Investment: Employee Health & the Power of Metrics” on Thursday 24th January.

Healthy Living Initiative

The Healthy Living Initiative builds on the work the World Economic Forum has been doing on non-communicable diseases (NCDs) over the past few years. The links between healthy populations, productive workforces and economic growth is well established. Worldwide, US$ 47 trillion of cumulative output loss can be expected in the next two decades due to NCDs and ill mental health. Supported by a broad coalition of organizations, across sectors and industries and in collaboration with Bain & Company, the initiative aims to have a positive and measurable impact on the prevention and promoting Healthy Living and preventing NCDs through multistakeholder actions.

The initiative will present the Charter for Healthy Living and a toolkit to catalyse multistakeholder collaborations. These lay the foundation for the second phase of the initiative, which will be rolled out in 2013 at country and city levels.

In addition, the Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Well-Being and Mental Health will be launching its new Resilience Application, an online tool to assess your personal resilience. The tool will also provide a comparison with the average users’ scores and a detailed report on how to continue building your own resilience.

The Annual Meeting in Davos has traditionally been a powerful incubator for global health initiatives like the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria or the GAVI Alliance. Representatives of these organizations will participate in the Meeting and continue the discussion around global health.

Notes to Editors