The environment in which we live and our lifestyle in society have an important influence on our health and therefore on whether or not we age healthily. We do not notice many of the negative effects directly, but only ‘when the damage is done’. In order to actually age healthily, it is important to take preventive and integral action. Prevention research is a large and important part of the Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health and runs through all five themes.
No healthy years without prevention
Without prevention, we can forget about the creation of more healthy years, that is the position of the researchers involved in the research area Prevention: Design & Evaluation. Preventive research in the field of public health concerns the creation of a healthy environment, but also the protection of our health and the promotion of a healthy lifestyle in society. Within the Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health, Prevention: Design & Evaluation generates knowledge in the area of methods and tools for carrying out prevention research, and ensures that we can measure the effect of these efforts by means of evaluation studies.
The researchers focus on designing and implementing tools, methods and programmes in the field of prevention, with the following goals:
- Influencing residents’, employees’, clients’ and patients’ behaviour in order to promote a healthy lifestyle.
- Think of smoking and eating behaviour and, for example, the degree of physical activity.
Co-operation in the area of prevent-cure-care approaches.
- Multiple interventions have a short-term effect, but also contribute to the prevention objectives in the long run.
Investing in the prevention of non-communicable diseases (NCDs).
- A global approach to health.
Improving the cost-effectiveness of infectious disease control.
- Better diagnoses, optimal use of antibiotics and broader effects of vaccines.
Only when we measure the effects of our interventions and reflect on the chosen methods, tools and programmes, we can improve science in prevention. That is why evaluation of preventive interventions is an important part of the method Prevention: Design & Evaluation.
We conduct research into:
- Big data analysis: which tools and techniques can we use and how do we ensure that people's privacy is guaranteed?
- District approaches: how do we acquire insight into the effect of simultaneous, multiple interventions within a specific district?
- The impact on the medical, social, psychological, economic and legal domains.
- Multi-level analysis: the impact of interventions at different levels.
- Cost-effectiveness analysis: for example, when using vaccines.
- Scaling up promising interventions.
Preventive measures to create more healthy years for everyone can only succeed if the research, practice, education and policy areas work intensively together in a multi-disciplinary context.
That is exactly the reason why prevention is such a big theme within the Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health.