of 13 /13
SIXTY-SIXTH WORLD HEALTH ASSEMBLY ANNEX 3 FORM FOR CURRICULUM VITAE Family name (surname): Dr. SZÓCSKA First/other names: MIKLÓS, Károly Attach recent photograph Gender: MALE Date of birth (Day/Month/Year): 27.07.1960 Place and country of birth: BUDAPEST(IX), HUNGARY Citizenship: HUNGARIAN If you have ever been found guilty of the violation of any law (except minor traffic violations) give full particulars: - Civil status: MARRIED Number of dependants:3

Embed Size (px)






Family name (surname): Dr. SZÓCSKA

First/other names: MIKLÓS, Károly

Attach recent photograph

Gender: MALE

Date of birth (Day/Month/Year):


Place and country of birth: BUDAPEST(IX), HUNGARY

Citizenship: HUNGARIAN

If you have ever been found guilty of the violation of any law (except minor traffic violations) give full particulars: -

Civil status: MARRIED Number of dependants:3



Degrees/certificates obtained: (Please indicate here the principal degrees/certificates obtained,

with dates and names of institutions. Additional pages may be added.)

Medical Doctor, 1989 Semmelweis University of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine Budapest (Hungary)

Master of Public Administration, 1998 Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government Cambridge, Massachusetts (USA)

Doctoral Diploma (PhD), 2009

In the field of change management Semmelweis University Budapest (Hungary)







For languages other than mother tongue,

enter the appropriate number from the code

below to indicate the level of your language

knowledge. If no knowledge, please leave


CODE: 1.Limited conversation,

reading of newspapers,

routine correspondence.

2. Engage freely in discussions,

read and write more difficult


3. Fluent (nearly) as in mother













Others (please specify)

German Hungarian


1 1




Positions held: Please indicate here the positions and work experience held during your

professional career, with the corresponding dates, duties, achievements/accomplishments and

responsibilities. Additional pages may be added.

2010-2014. Minister of State for Health

Ministry of Human Resources, Government of Hungary

Budapest, Hungary

Between 2010-2014, I served a full electoral term as minister of state for health in Hungary. Besides

managing sustainability of health services during the world economic crisis, we implemented an

evidence-based reform portfolio supported by a participatory, consultative change framework. We

introduced a demanding set of public health regulations including full ban of smoking in all closed

public places, the decrease of trans-fat content of food, introduction of HPV vaccination for adolescent

girls, and the introduction of public health product tax (PHPT) on food and beverages with added salt

and sugar content. PHPT proved to be an innovative tool to influence consumer and industry behavior

simultaneously, and generated invaluable resources during the deepest times of economic crisis. People

consumed less added sugar and salt and companies improved their food production formulas. Revenues

from PHPT were used to raise the salaries of nurses and doctors to slow down health workers

emigration. In 2013 WHO awarded the government for the anti-smoking actions and Hungary jumped

to the 11th

place from the 27th on the Tobacco Scale Control Index.

We laid down the foundations of a new national health service by nationalizing hospitals, re-

engineering and integrating patient pathways, introducing regionally centralized capacity planning and

tailoring capacities to current needs. We started a pilot for the strengthening of primary care in

disadvantaged regions, targeting the Roma minority, children, the elderly and marginalised people.

Robust European structural fund investment supported the modernization of service infrastructures and

the core foundations of a national electronic health system.

Our pharmaceutical policy of innovative payment schemes, taxing, competitive bidding radically

decreased pharma expenditure of health insurance and citizens, making therapies more accessible in

times of economic crisis.

In 2011 we successfully managed the Hungarian EU presidency, contributing to the EU Council

conclusions “Towards modern, responsive and sustainable health systems”, later chairing a workgroup

of the EU refection process on investment in health systems, developing a toolkit for the smart use of

European structural funds. I was also a member of the EU eHealth Task Force laying the foundations

of current European eHealth policies.

During my mandate we had close collaboration with WHO, such as on health system performance

evaluation, TB screening reform and mental health. We harmonized our EU presidency agenda with

WHO and our collaboration on health human resources strategy triggered our participation in the EU

joint action.

1995-present - Founder, Associate Professor, Director

Health Services Management Training Centre, Semmelweis University

Budapest, Hungary

With colleagues, we initiated the formation of the Health Services Management Training Centre

(HSMTC) at Semmelweis University in 1990. Since then I have leading responsibilities in the

development and operations of HSMTC as an institution and in developing training, research, and

development programmes in Hungary and internationally. I became the director in 2000. After my


four-year term as minister of state I returned to HSMTC as director. My professional interest covers

the development of organisations, management of change and leadership. Me and my colleagues had

extensive research in HR migration and HR strategy for health. Most recently I focus on network

analysis and case-based crisis communication training.

In 2015 Semmelweis University trusted me with responsibilities for the strategic development of the

Institute of Digital Health Sciences.

HSMTC has been the ECA regional partner institute of the World Bank Institute for the Flagship

program (with app. 1200 participants from 41 countries). HSMTC participated in the European Health

Executive program and since 2016 is the WHO Collaborating Center for Human Resources in Health.

1992-1993 - Member of Supervisory Board, (elected by the National Assembly)

National Health Insurance Fund Administration

Budapest, Hungary

The Board was responsible for overseeing NHIFA, the single payer of the Hungarian health insurance


Please state any other relevant facts that might help in the evaluation of your application. List

your activities in civil, professional, public or international affairs.

International development projects

Broad experience with planning and implementation of international development projects of various

donor agencies including WHO, the World Bank or the EU. As minister of state I managed EU

structural fund projects with the magnitude of 1.5 billion euros.

Participation in recent WHO activities

WHO Mission in Romania supporting the preparation of the Regional Health Services Plan of the

disadvantaged North-East Region, Bucharest, 2016.

WHO Expert Advisory Group Member on reviewing the Relevance and Effectiveness of the WHO

Global Code of Practice on the International Recruitment of Health Personnel, Geneva, 2015.

WHO expert meeting on implementation of health system transformation, Madrid, 2015.

Selected participations in international organizations

Past and present board member or supervisory positions at international organizations, such as

European Health Management Association (EHMA), European Health Property Network (EUHPN),

EIT HEALTH-European Institute of Innovation & Technology.


Participating or leading workgroups in several international projects:

EU HRH Joint Action (2013-2016) establishing a shared HRH strategy, with 30 associated and 62

collaborating partners, review of country practices, sharing of good practices, development of planning

and forecasting tools.

EunetHTA (in progress) delivering a sustainable and streamlined model of health technology

assessment for Europe. HSMTC contributes to the joint production of HTAs, dissemination and


E-Health Joint Action (in progress) supporting the developments of the EU eHealth network.

HSMTC is responsible for international dissemination of all outputs of the project.



Please list here a maximum of 10 publications - especially the main ones in the field of public

health, with names of journals, books or reports in which they appeared. An additional page

may be used for this purpose, if necessary. (Please feel free also to attach a complete list of all

publications.) Do not attach the publications themselves.

Selected publications

Girasek, Kovács, Aszalós, Eke, Kovács, Cserháti, Szócska (2016). Headcount and FTE data in the

European health workforce monitoring and planning process. HRH, 14:42. DOI:10.1186/s12960-016-


Task Force of the Minister of State for Health (2011). Resuscitated Health Care – Recovering

Hungary. Semmelweis Plan for the Rescue of Health Care. Policy Document. Budapest, Hungary:

Ministry of National Resources, Ministry of State for Health.

Eke, Girasek, Szócska (2011). From melting pot to change lab Central Europe: Health workforce

migration in Hungary. In: Wismar et al. (Eds). Evidence from 17 European Countries. Copenhagen:

WHO; European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies,365-294.

Szócska (2009) Report on the use of structural funds for health investment in Hungary. Report for DG

Sanco, European Commission, Brussels.

Gaál, Belli, McKee, Szócska (2006). Informal Payments for Healthcare: Definitions, Distinctions and

Dilemmas. JHPPL,31:251-293.

Szócska, Réthelyi, Normand (2005). Managing Healthcare Reform in Hungary: Challenges and

Opportunities. BMJ,331:231-33.

To demonstrate communication skills, I list selected keynote speeches and presentations

Szócska (2016). The Hungarian Tobacco Blitz, Tobacco Control in Northern and Western Europe.

Tobacco Symposium State of the Art & Best Available Practices, Wien, Austria

Szócska (2014). Big Data in System Reform, Management Control, Power game and Transparency.

E-Health Forum, Athens, Greece

Szócska (2013). Health systems in times of crisis. 16th European Health Forum Gastein, Austria

Szócska (2013). Presentation to WHO directors on “Key interventions in Hungarian Health Policy- Towards sustainable health systems” under the invitation of WHO DG Margaret Chan

Please list hobbies, sports, skills and any other relevant facts that might help in the evaluation of

your application.

My family heritage has strong public health roots. Both of my parents were paediatricians belonging to the medical generation fighting back tuberculosis in Hungary (Morbus Hungaricus). As a child I could observe my mother working together with green cross nurses and received an early imprinting in the importance of fieldwork of communities, hygiene, vaccination, doctors and nurses working in teams. This team spirit with nurses was so visible in my work that I was awarded as Honorary Nurse by the Hungarian Nursing Association, an award that I am really proud of. Two generations earlier the


family lost two of my grandparents and one of my aunts in tuberculosis and today Hungary is a champion in vaccination statistics and eradication of communicable diseases. My family took part in winning that war with poverty and disease. I gain balance doing sports (swimming the favourite), music and reading (history as preference).




Please evaluate how you meet each of the “Criteria for candidates for the post of the Director-

General of the World Health Organization” (see attached sheet). In so doing, please make

reference to specific elements of your curriculum vitae to support your evaluation. The criteria

adopted by the World Health Assembly in resolution WHA65.15 are the following:

a strong technical background in a health field, including experience in public health;

My health reform and public health regulatory agenda demonstrate a strong understanding of health

priorities and an ability to put knowledge in action. I believe that the implementation of these reforms

and the management of the EU presidency prepared me to act on global level.

I habitually do my job working in teams and as public health interventions are collaborative efforts I

am ready to mobilise WHO and the best public health experts and institutions to support our decisions

and actions with a global network.

exposure to and extensive experience in international health;

HSMTC has been a partner institute of international agencies and universities. As director I gained

broad experience with international training programs focusing on health reforms, financing, AIDS

and tuberculosis in Europe, Central Asia, Asia and Africa. These interactive training programs focused

on skill development for international participants to define their problems, plan relevant interventions

and develop local ownership towards solutions.

demonstrable leadership skills and experience;

My first leadership experience was being elected as student president from the opposition at the dawn

of the system change of the late 80’s. I have learnt the importance of mobilizing people and

organisational resources for change. Since then I have developed a systemic approach of consultations

with stakeholders and professionals to prevent resistance against change and for developing

ownership of the problems and solutions. These capacities helped me to manage the Hungarian

healthcare with a demanding reform agenda through the world economic crisis and stay in office for a

full electoral term, while average life expectancy in my position was 20 months in the previous 20


During my term we successfully managed European Presidency with strong human resources crisis

and sustainability of health services agenda.

excellent communication and advocacy skills;

The anti-smoking regulation was carried through the full legislative processes in 76 days(!) with

84.1% majority votes and even 64% of smokers supported it. In the first year of the introduction of

HPV vaccination 80% of mothers requested their daughters to be vaccinated. The rapid

implementation and public support of the public health regulations demonstrate that I managed to

advocate the interest of health and we successfully persuaded stakeholders and public as well.

Managing the health system required dialogue with various stakeholders. Savings in pharma

expenditures or re-engineering patient pathways also needed regulatory interventions, but a successful

dialogue with patient and professional associations and industry as well to accept crisis realities.


demonstrable competence in organizational management;

The organizational transitions and development projects during my mandate were reinforced by

innovative management interventions. We introduced big data and network analysis in supporting

decisions and management control and these approaches could also be useful in forecasting and

modeling pandemics. The centralized national procurement of utilities and pharmaceuticals yielded

radical costs savings and larger volumes of medicines and vaccines. The broad range of reform,

development and organizational interventions were monitored for performance through project

portfolio management.

sensitivity to cultural, social and political differences;

Teaching on international programmes for a diverse audience that many times brought conflicting war

experience to the teaching room equipped me to touch the problems of health in a way to put it above

all particular conflicts and self interests. These experiences prepared me for my work on various WHO

and other professional committees and missions to successfully develop agreement, initiate and

implement change in culturally diverse or even divided context.

As minister of state I enhanced my country’s global opening initiatives and developed active cross

cultural relationships.

strong commitment to the mission and objectives of WHO;

For me health is a positive human right, implying a strong responsibility of communities to build

health systems providing equal access to good quality health services for all members of a society

without suffering financial hardship. Solidarity-based health systems are not only better, because they

provide access to the needed services for the disadvantaged members of a society, but there are plenty

of evidence out there, that they are more efficient for the wealthy and poor alike. Since 1990 as the

founder and director of HSMTC and later as minister of state I have been working in the public sector

for the benefit of the public, by improving the performance of the health system. With my family

heritage and a strong Hungarian legacy from Semmelweis I have been doing my job with firm public

service commitment.

good health condition required of all staff members of the Organization; and STATEMENT;

Based on the regular occupational health check-ups for public administrators or university employees I

can state that my health status is fit for the job.

sufficient skill in at least one of the official working languages of the Executive Board and the

Health Assembly. My international education and the daily usage of English as working language prepared me to operate in an international organisation.


Please state your vision of priorities and strategies for the World Health Organization:

The responsibilities of WHO for global health are relatively straightforward. As the director general of

WHO, I should work for:

► making people on this planet healthier and more cautious for their health,

► universal health coverage should protect those who get sick, and health systems should be

resilient, equitable and ever growing in quality,

► the mission of health promotion, prevention, cure and care should be provided by properly

trained, committed, motivated, innovative health labour force.

My vision therefore is a resilient WHO, that supports the efforts of governments to successfully cope

with the challenges posed by the rapidly changing world and environment, on the basis of the principle

of subsidiarity. I envisage a strong WHO as the indisputable, impartial leader in global health and the

world’s advocate for value driven health policy for better health and reduced inequities within the

2030 Agenda, and Sustainable Development Goals. The world needs WHO as a leading international

change agent for health, and an agile global agency to deal with the extremes and the unexpected. The

road to resilience is a long one: it requires an organisation, which is a knowledge center of both

technical and social innovations, and the master of technical and political feasibility. The cornerstones

of such a paradigmatic transformation are as follows:

The question is always WHAT but the answer is HOW

In many cases we have sufficient evidence and proper solutions in theory for WHAT should be done.

We also have the experience that the best theoretical solutions fail in implementation. Many times we

can solve problems of technical nature but fail when we have to initiate behavioural change. As a

consequence, we experience a high failure rate with sustainable change or feasible local actions.

Let us hear the message of these failures. No technical solution is valid without an implementation and

consultative change methodology. Changes should be evidence based and balanced with behavioural

insights. No external solution is valid without local ownership. Working on WHAT should go together

with HOW. This approach will be the key methodological element of my work.

Act in the present, be prepared for the unexpected, plan and build for the future

Traditional answers and official procedures that were useful and sufficient to lay the foundations of

global institutions in a steadier world do not necessarily deliver solutions in the present social, political

and industrial realities. New, globally successful health actors and donors grew out of the rapidly

changing organizational environment and successfully started to fill the adaptational vacuum and

dominate the institutional world with their actions.

WHO has to transform, get organized to become an agile global agency and build renewed global

partnerships to meet the challenges. With building on the already existing initiatives, the values and

exceptional professional power of WHO, we have to start it now.

Break out of the professional isolation and make health a global political economic and financial


WHO has to act in a changing political context. The international health community, policy makers

and experts globally united and ready to align their actions with the SDGs, and its health priorities.

However, in times of global economic crisis, fiscal austerity, countries breaking up with no visible

public administration, this is not enough.

We have to break out of this isolation and the inbreeding of our internal professional wish lists. The

health community has to be able to influence the agendas of global and national political leaders and

fiscal decision makers like prime ministers or ministers of finance to not only hear our cry, but to


make them act towards solutions. WHO has to refocus its persuasion on them. The SDG agenda

provides WHO and the global health community with an unprecedented momentum to renew

commitments for health at the level of heads of states through involvement of the whole government

and society. We have to build on the power of successful examples and practices of nations and

alliances that were able to shape the global health agenda with their initiatives.

Make people healthier – those in need should come first

To make people healthier is a paradox task. At some parts of the world people get sick and die because

of their wealth and lifestyle while at other parts they die as a consequence of poverty and the lack of

basic hygiene or public health services. We must understand that in this world, globalised by travel

and marketing, we are destined to share and manage risks of communicable and non-communicable

diseases, high-, low-, and middle-income countries together. Having global perspectives in mind, we

have to understand which countries are in urgent necessity and those in biggest need should enjoy

primacy. The top priorities are:

► The management of pandemics - with utmost agility in preparedness, forecasting, modelling, logistics and surveillance,

- in coordinated partnership,

- with interventions that are culturally tailored,

- supporting local actions with global rapid response teams complementing weak or missing

local capacities.

► Sharing the risks could not be managed without stable and sustainable funding

- acknowledging the unprecedented efforts of global donors, it is time to recognise the need for institutional resource generation responses to promote universal coverage and pandemic risk


- understanding that global funding is of political consideration and should happen in dialogue

with governmental and business communities we should promote innovative economic models

for generating resources, such as public health product taxation.

► In the fight against AMR, humanity should be equipped with new antibiotics and ensure

access to high prized medicines (vaccines and drugs) globally - with new business models developed in dialogue with a portfolio of stakeholders from donors

through research to business communities,

- the antibiotics strategy should be managed through influencing behaviour of professionals and

cross sectorial interventions.

► Health human resources developments and balancing migration globally in coordinated


► WHO should promote innovation and technology in changing the trends regarding accessibility

and equity and take advantages of the tools of the 21st Century with

- utilising big data technologies to improve our warning and surveillance systems and predictive

capabilities, - mobile and wearable technologies to take diagnostics and therapy to places where they never

existed before this way promoting access very cost-effectively,

- point of care technologies to provide health care for those in the flow of migration.

► Countries emerging from conflicts without solid public administration systems - by developing of public health systems parallel to and integrated in the establishment of new

public administration.


► The development of primary care and care coordination through cross-country learning

and sharing good practices.

► Fighting NCDs globally with social mobilisation and behaviour change in mind

WHO should transform as an Institution

With promoting the idea of resilient health systems towards member states, comes the responsibility of

WHO to be resilient. WHO has all the potential and is full of expertise and goodwilling staff to

accomplish a cultural change. To make this happen I will ensure a team spirit, a culture of open speech

and consultation for all staff members, career progression and recruitment based on merit. In this

process we have to build on the achievements of the ongoing WHO reforms in alignment with the

broader UN reform agenda. The key components of the transformation strategy include:

► developing change management capacities,

► redesigning performance and reporting in a global project portfolio management framework

focusing on results, problem solving,

► to prevent bureaucracy to strangle action,

► development of rapid response teams and task forces to support country efforts to cope with local

health-related emergencies, building on mobilising WHO’s resources globally,

► further development of risk communication capabilities,

► empower professional and management information systems by big data technologies and

enhance transparency

► stabilising funding of WHO and its priority programmes.

Partnerships and collaboration should be endorsed

Health problems are larger than what a single organisation could ever bear. I will work to achieve

effective collaboration partnerships and coordinated actions within UN and with, member states,

donors and international stakeholders:

► As a leader umbrella organization in its changing institutional system, WHO is to renew


► We should be good listeners and ensure that no expertise is wasted by ignorance, no partnerships

are lost by indolence, no resistance is provoked by arrogance. We are here to serve health.

With my application I express that this is the job I am ready to do on a global level, with respect to

local cultures and pride, in trustworthy partnerships with member states, donors and allies.