Societal challenge - Being healthy and staying healthy

One of the four societal challenges of our Research Agenda 2022-2024
High quality public health is a precondition for the functioning of a society, and for maintaining and developing prosperity and the economy. Major challenges lie ahead when it comes to maintaining a high standard of public health.

Nivel-U1-foto-rand-350pxThe research we conduct in the framework of the challenge on how to be and stay healthy, is divided into the four subjects:

  • Increasing multimorbidity
  • The impact of infectious diseases on health and society
  • The influence of living environment on public health
  • Preventive care

All relevant research information and results on these subjects you will find at the sections Publications, Projects, News, etc.

Nivel-Icoon-U1-MultimorbiditeitSubject: Increasing multimorbidity

More than 5 million adults in the Netherlands live with multiple disorders; this is called multimorbidity. Proper healthcare provision in the case of multimorbidity requires integral cooperation and network healthcare. Also attention for prevention is of great importance.

  • We offer an integrated overview of the current situation regarding the healthcare services offered to people with multimorbidity.
  • We put the patient perspectives at the centre of our research. With our innovative techniques, we conduct predictive research into (multi)morbidity.
Ilgin Arslan

The COVID pandemic shows that it is important to have an integrated surveillance system that can identify in time how a pandemic is developing. This helps policymakers to take targeted measures in line with the latest developments.Ilgin ArslanResearcher Learning Health System

Nivel-icoon-U1-InfectieziektenSubject: The impact of infectious diseases on health and society

Early detection of infectious outbreaks is a precondition for fast and effective intervention. By making use of the Nivel Primary Care Database we continuously present up-to-date surveillance data on occurring diseases, such as influenza and COVID-19.

  • On a weekly basis, our surveillance team identifies and reports on emerging health problems and their physical impact.
  • We investigate the social and mental impact of infectious diseases on a societal and an individual level.

Nivel-icoon-U1-leefomgevingSubject: The influence of living environment on public health

The Netherlands is a densely populated country with a wide diversity in living environments, such as: cities, agricultural environments, traffic networks, and industrial environments. How do these environments affect public health?

  • We monitor whether there are risks associated with living in certain environments, by connecting different data sources. In this way, we can recognise patterns of occurring potential health risks. This knowledge provides tools for policymaking in crisis situations.
  • We are an active partner in research networks on the complex issue of ‘health and living environment’.

Nivel-icoon-U1-PreventieSubject: Preventive care

When investing in prevention, the key is to move ‘from aftercare to preventive care’. Many parties in the healthcare and well-being sector have a role in this and the field in which this topic plays a role is broad.

  • We examine the interactions between different strategies and actors. How do they reinforce each other and where does the interaction turn out to be unfortunate? This insight is essential to enable policy learning.
  • With our ‘patient journey mapping’ of patients with chronic disease(s) in primary and secondary care, we present insights which help to prevent negative consequences or loss of function in these patients.
Wytske Meekes

The implementation of fall prevention in primary care is difficult and complex, but also important and meaningful. Efforts to prevent falls can only be successful if healthcare providers from different disciplines work together and complement each other.Wytske MeekesResearcher

Meer weten?Take a look at our research content concerning the challenge

The relevant research information and results on these three subjects, you will find in at the sections Publications, Projects, News, etc. on this webpage.

Want to know more about another societal challenge? Click on its label.



Zenderen, I. van (Nivel Research Communication Center). Societal challenge - Being healthy and staying healthy . From: [Last update 10-November-2022; consulted on 31-January-2023]. URL: