The Republic of San Marino, one of the oldest in the world, is present at Expo 2020 Dubai with its own pavilion that tells the story, tourism and a Country System of the small independent state, within the Italian territory, which is increasingly long-living and healthy.

The high quality of life offered by the Republic of San Marino places it among the longest-living countries in the world. According to the latest data, life expectancy is 82 years for men and 86 for women. 

San Marino Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai

San Marino Pavilion Expo Dubai
San Marino Pavilion Expo 2020 Dubai

Life expectancy, which characterises the Republic of San Marino as one of the longest-living and healthiest countries in the world, is one of the themes featured in the journey through the Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai.

Past, present and future. With the claim "The treasure of San Marino. A thousand-year-old treasure that unites countries"., the San Marino Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, located in the area Opportunità, is divided into thematic areas:

  • History and traditions with experimental reproduction of the 22 jewels of the treasure of Domagnano (the 'Fibula of Domagnano' is on display at the Louvre Abu Dhabi, ed.,);
  • Tourism: with two wall-mounted screens positioned opposite each other describing what San Marino offers to the public; 
  • Country System: shows, through graphic panels and videos, the most important "highlights" of San Marino's economy with particular attention to life expectancy, the quality of services in general and also the level of health care.

Among the themes of the San Marino Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai there is also the one on life expectancy with the descriptive panel "Life Expactancy of 86 Years", displayed in the Country System area.

Longevity and health: San Marino Pavilion presents the Country System at Expo Dubai

What are the elements that place the Republic of San Marino among the top five countries in the world for longevity?

What does this important international position represent for the small independent state, especially at a time of a Covid-19 health emergency?

We went to the site and talked about it with Dr. Letizia Cardelli, Director of the San Marino Pavilion, as well as a Clinical Health Psychologist with specialisation from King's College London. 

The Healthcare System of the Republic of San Marino: efficiency and international comparison

One of the elements that make the Republic of San Marino one of the most long-living countries in the world: the Health Care System. For the World Health Organisation, the Republic of San Marino confirms also this year the third position for the quality of the health service after France and Italy.

Mrs Cardelli, Hoe the health system works? 

The Healthcare System of the Republic of San Marino: efficiency and international comparison. The pandemic management and the vaccination campaign have been and still are an example of efficiency, competence and pragmatism. The small size of the country certainly helped, but it must be pointed out that San Marino immediately sought to avail itself of health professionals capable of dealing with the pandemic.

The San Marino model is not only a health system, but also a social security system and the body which manages San Marino health is called "Istituto per la Sicurezza Sociale" (Institute for Social Security) and includes health, social and welfare activities, as well as prevention, public health and welfare. In every country, citizens are identified by a unique code, a sort of personal identification code which takes into account date and place of birth, etc... In San Marino that code is called "ISS code", in other countries, such as Italy, it is a "tax code". This shows a different cultural approach, here based on the right to health, elsewhere on identity for tax purposes.

The WHO has repeatedly stressed that access to health care and assistance in general should be for all and that universalist models are those that best guarantee access to care and thus the health of the individual, which translates into the health of the community.

In 2014, was adopted the "San Marino Manifesto". What is it about and what are the objectives? 

San Marino, became the leader among the small states of the European region within the WHO to carry out common initiatives. In July 2014, this commitment became more concrete (there was already a previous one in 2012) and became operational with the first ministerial meeting between the 8 small countries involved in the project (Andorra, Cyprus, Iceland, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro and San Marino). During the meeting, which was held on Mount Titano, the 'San Marino Manifesto' was adopted. The aim of the Manifesto is to harmonise the health systems of the countries that are similar to each other, optimising resources even in times of crisis, encouraging governments to tackle health problems in a more constructive and comprehensive manner, avoiding cuts and inconsistencies of intervention. Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

In 2018, a new meeting was held in San Marino, with a wide-ranging discussion on health policies and development programmes among the various Small Countries and in view of the 2030 objectives of the UN agenda, the majority of which cover health and socio-health issues.

How important is it to confront health policies developed at world level and to interact with the health and social systems of other countries, with particular regard to Italy? 

San Marino, through the ISS, represents an extraordinary and unprecedented experience of modern welfare. And today we are well aware that healthcare is also one of the most important economic factors in the development programmes of various countries. There are those who have even realised lines of development through health tourism and those who manage to attract new economic residences, i.e. wealthy pensioners, not only thanks to advantageous taxation, but above all thanks to the simultaneous presence of an efficient and professional health service.

Among the themes of the San Marino Pavilion at the first universal exhibition in the Arab territory, in progress until 31 March 2022, also those related to health.

"The matter of well-being and life expectancy," explained Cardelli - characterises the Republic of San Marino and it was therefore very important to bring this excellence to Expo 2020 Dubai".

During the six months of the exhibition there is a national day for each Pavilion. 10 December is a national day entirely dedicated to the San Marino Pavilion, with initiatives and the presence of San Marino athletes who participated and won at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

Expo 2020 Dubai is currently hosting the "Program for People and Planet"a project with and for the global community that aims to find solutions to the most pressing problems for a healthier, safer, cleaner and fairer world for all. The programme is divided into 18 international days and 10 thematic weeks, including the week Health & Wellness, scheduled from 27 January to 2 February.

What is the San Marino Pavilion planning for Health & Wellness week?