Qatar, also known as the State of Qatar or locally Dawlat Qaṭar, is a sovereign Arab state, located in the Middle East, occupying the small Qatar Peninsula on the northeasterly coast of the much larger Arabian Peninsula. Its sole land border is with Saudi Arabia to the south, with the rest of its territory surrounded by the Persian Gulf. A strait of the Persian Gulf separates Qatar from the nearby island state of Bahrain.
Qatar became independent in 1971, and has become one of the region's wealthiest states due to its enormous oil and natural gas revenues. In 1995, His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani became Emir. Qatar has the world's highest per capita GDP and proven reserves of both oil and natural gas.
Qatar's healthcare sector has come a long way since the country's first hospital opened its doors almost 50 years ago. Today, the industry boasts the most advanced medical equipment and highly qualified staff, a countrywide network of hospitals and healthcare centers, as well as a cardiology department that is referred to by outside specialists as "one of the best in the world". And according to a report from the general secretariat of the GCC ministers of health, Qatar enjoys the region's lowest maternal mortality rate.