Kuwaiti health communities are foundational to the Ministry of Health's vision, benefiting and reinforcing people's health prospects in partnership with governmental and private sectors, said Minister of Health Dr. Ahmad Al-Awadhi Wednesday.

In an opening speech celebrating and honoring the Healthy Cities Office, Dr. Al-Awadhi said that the "Health Mall" initiative is a shining example of different sectors joining for a progressive cause: developing supportive environments for health to flourish amongst people.

Chronic diseases, Dr. Al-Awadhi added, cause 40 million deaths annually, approximately 70 percent of annual deaths globally according to World Health Organization data, indicating a massive burden on public health, economic and social development, and a drain on resources.

Health Malls, as an initiative, had garnered support by the World Health Organization and the Gulf Cooperation Council of Health Ministers to provide people with spaces for health-specific reasons, added Al-Awadhi.

The Health Malls, Dr. Al-Awadhi elaborated, aim to raise awareness regarding the importance of health, provide environments that advocate, support, and maintain health behaviors, and endorse a sense of social responsibility for the public.

Because of the Health Cities Office's noticeable efforts, it was able to receive contributions from six commercial malls, eager to collaborate with the Ministry of Health to promote a healthy way of life for visitors.

In her speech, head of the Health Cities office Dr. Amal Al-Yahya extends her gratitude to the six shopping malls in their desire to become health spaces for the public, underscoring the rigorous accreditation stage the malls are going through.

The Health Malls initiative, Dr. Al-Yahya added, displays the collaborative effort of the Ministry of Health with private and commercial sectors, highlighting their homogenous determinations to facilitate the logistics of this initiative.

In a similar statement, the head of the Health Malls initiative Dr. Layla Al-Fezae said that the role of this initiative is to promote a comradery between the Ministry and private sectors, achieving the highest level of job satisfaction, reducing stress, and spreading security.

More than 40 thousand people of all ages visit shopping malls, Dr. Al-Fezae added, and on holidays, the number of visitors received at malls rises to 180 thousand people daily, accentuating need and importance of Healthy Malls to promote healthy lifestyles.

Among the malls being accredited are the Avenues Mall, 360 Mall, Assima Mall, and Promenade Mall.

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