Dr Muhammad Radzi Named New Health DG

Dr Muhammad Radzi Abu Hassan succeeds Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, who has reached the compulsory retirement age of 60, as the new Health director-general, starting from April 21, 2023.

KUALA LUMPUR, April 25 – The Ministry of Health (MOH) has appointed Dr Muhammad Radzi Abu Hassan as the new Health director-general (DG), effective April 21, 2023.

Dr Muhammad Radzi Abu Hassan takes over the role from Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, who has reached the compulsory retirement age of 60. Dr Noor Hisham has held the position since 2013, and is widely recognised for his leadership during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I am confident that with Dr Muhammad Radzi’s experience, knowledge, expertise, and credibility, he will be able to deliver the best and work as a team with me to ensure that the goals and agenda of health reforms in the country are fully implemented in line with the Health White Paper that is being developed. This is to ensure that Malaysians continue to enjoy comprehensive, quality, and sustainable health care services,” said Health Minister Dr Zaliha in a statement today.

Dr Muhammad Radzi, who turns 58 this year, previously served as consultant physician and gastroenterologist at Hospital Sultanah Bahiyah in Kedah, a major public specialist referral centre in northern peninsular Malaysia, and was head of its Clinical Research Centre.

Dr Muhammad Radzi’s recent research has focused on improving hepatitis treatment for patients. His efforts have included decentralising hepatitis treatment to make it more accessible to vulnerable populations, researching new hepatitis treatments to reduce treatment duration and improve patient compliance, and exploring novel liver biomarkers to detect and prevent complications like hepatocellular carcinoma and cirrhosis.

He has also been heavily involved in drafting national-level policies, particularly in gastroenterology and hepatology.

As the new Health DG, Dr Muhammad Radzi will assume the responsibility of overseeing Malaysia’s health care system, having previously served as Deputy DG of Health (Research and Technical Support).

His appointment comes at a crucial time when health care reforms are urgently needed to address workforce challenges in the public health care system. The country is also facing multiple health crises, such as non-communicable diseases (NCDs), an ageing population, and mental health issues.

Dr Zaliha is slated to present the Health White Paper in the upcoming Parliament sitting, which is scheduled to run for 11 days starting from May 22.

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