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Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health
Together for more healthy years
Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health

Aletta Health Centres Meet & Greet

11 April 2024
Centres meet & greet

On April 2nd, the Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health organized a meet and greet with the health centers. During this short but content-packed event, presenters from the UMCG, NHL Stenden, Hanze and the RUG gave us insight into their perspectives on health and healthcare.

The event started with a short introduction by Nienke Schripsema and Brigit Toebes in which the program for the afternoon was briefly discussed and the various partners were asked to briefly introduce themselves.

After this brief round of introductions we immediately started with the first presentation. Erik Buskens (AJSPH/UMCG) told us about Vitaal Groningen. Erik began with a quote often attributed to Einstein: "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result." He immediately explained that the statement is not from Einstein, but he does agree with it. And yet projects repeatedly keep focusing on lifestyle in disjointed projects that often have to stop halfway through due to poor funding. Vitaal Groningen does things differently; it is a long-term cohesive multidisciplinary project in which researchers work with citizens to reduce health disparities and stimulate the local economy.

Erik was followed by Job van 't Veer (NHL Stenden) who gave a presentation on the digital health literacy platform. He started by showing us a number of digital tools used in healthcare, some more unique than others. Immediately after, he showed us that about 20% of the elderly do not even use their phone to message their family. In the rest of the presentation, Job talked about various initiatives and ways to increase digital literacy, such as sitting together and talking with seniors on location. He also touched on how researchers often think that a certain group is hard to reach, but that it is often not nearly as hard as you think if you take a step back from the research and start talking to people.

In the last presentation before the break, Frederike Jörg (UMCG) talked about platform prevention and lifestyle. During the presentation, she shared information about the task she and her colleagues had been given to advise the UMCG board of directors on promoting more coherence in Healthy Ageing over the next 5 years. They focus on nutrition, exercise and mental health. In the new strategy, prevention rather than curing is key. Although it can sometimes be difficult to tell a doctor in the hospital to focus on prevention rather than curing, they are going to do it anyway.

During the networking break, most people were very busy networking and not very busy actually taking a break. It wasn’t just during the break, each presentation led to a discussion and often so many questions that they couldn't all be answered before space had to be made for the next speaker.

After the break it was Jeroen Pronk's (Hanze) turn, he told us about the Hanze 'Centre of Expertise Healthy Ageing'. The center works towards more healthy years for the northern region by promoting equal opportunities and participation, a healthy lifestyle and living environment, and appropriate care and vulnerability. Cooperation with the community plays an important role in this, so the goal is to achieve a result together with the citizens.

The final presentation of the event was given by Marloes Heeres (Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health and Hanze). Her presentation was about Aletta's communication, mission, vision, message and resources. A little more background on what Aletta communicates about and for whom. An underlying goal of the event was for people who work on communication to meet one another, that way we'll know how to find each other more easily in the future.

The various presentations of the day were all different, but there was a clear common thread. The citizens. Everyone agreed on that subject, if we want to improve our health and care we have to work together with the citizens. There should not only be care for the citizens, but rather care together with the citizens.

Even after the presentations, during the drinks, there was a lot of discussion. So much, in fact, that there is still plenty to discuss in a possible future event.

Last modified:11 April 2024 4.09 p.m.
View this page in: Nederlands

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