Policy Dialogue Series

Title: Happiness, well-being and health: Can cross jurisdictional efforts and leadership be optimized?

Date:  20th October, 2021, Wednesday, 2.00 – 5.00 PM, BST (+6 hours GMT)
Platform: Zoom and face to face for panelists based at Thimphu
Organizer: Dean’s Office, Faculty of Postgraduate Medicine, KGUMSB

Zoom Meeting Link:

Meeting ID: 643 5672 3028
Passcode: 918372


The modern medical services in Bhutan were introduced in early 1960s under the benevolent leadership of our visionary Kings. Health services has always been free of cost. The Constitution of Bhutan, as mandated by Article 9, Clause 21, provides access for all free basic public health services at all times.

The majority of health determinants play crucial role in contributing to happiness, well-being, happiness and healthy life as per Gross national happiness philosophy. However, there are other broader social and economic determinants play equally important role such as policies and build environment for physical activity, alcohol and tobacco access and control, pedestrians sidewalks, overhead bridege, disability friendly and mechanism of operationalization of the polices at district level by local government.

For instance, one of the major mandates of RSTA to ensure a safe transport system includes development and implementation of strategies including road safety education and training programs to avoid accidents related to transportation. Similarly, BAFRA is ensuring safe and quality food in the country for building a healthy population in the country. This section also monitors the manufacture of safe and quality food commodities. Also, foodborne outbreaks are investigated as per the Food Safety Investigation Manual.

There are various tobacco Control mechanisms such as allow only micro general shops and grocery stores to sell tobacco products, banned for minors under the age of 18 years and non-adherence to these rules are dealt with severe penalties. Not allowing shopkeepers are not allowed to advertise tobacco products on the counters or any other social media platforms. Additionally, sale of tobacco in the vicinity of hospitals, schools, BHUs, Clinics, Dzongs, private as well as public heritage is also strictly prohibited.

The Royal Bhutan police ensure that the rules of traffic are strictly followed by every driver to avoid unnecessary accidents, by verifying necessary documents and alcohol breath tests etc.

Others such as MoE is responsible for improving the health and wellbeing of the students along with providing wholesome education. The local Governance is responsible for bringing the issues in local government for discussion at the national level. It monitors and records the healthy practices in local governments.

To promote discussion and public dialogue on health, well-being and happiness, the Faculty of Postgraduate Medicine, Khesar Gyalpo University of Medical Sciences of Bhutan (KGUMSB) will be hosting a policy dialogue on 20 October 2021. The imminent speakers include: Her Excellency (Dasho) Dechen Wangmo, Health Minister, Dasho Secretary, Member of Parliament, Dasho Dzongda, International experts, CSOs, voices from the community and academia.


  1. To link domains of Gross national Happiness to happiness and wellbeing to good health with psycho-social resilience.
  2. To understand existing role of the stakeholders towards wellbeing, happiness and health.
  3. To recommend innovative policy solutions in addressing the current practice to enhance health and health in all polices.