Leiden Convention Bureau is delighted to announce that one of our ambassadors, prof.dr. Andrea Evers serves as one of the scientific leaders of the new interdisciplinary Medical Delta programme Healthy Society in Medical Delta: Lifestyle & Prevention!

The prevalence of chronic diseases is rising as our society ages. Furthermore, there are significant health disparities between population groups, and the healthcare system is under increasing pressure. This emphasizes the importance of prevention and a healthy lifestyle, as well as the desire for scientific research into these topics. During the programme, researchers will investigate ways to encourage a healthy lifestyle, the best innovative technology, and how doing so can lower the risk of developing chronic illnesses. They will examine which technological innovations, like eHealth apps and programs, benefit human health and disease prevention.

Two research projects will kick off the program. The first aims to achieve long-term behavioural change in people suffering from cardiovascular disease and their loved ones. For them, lifestyle modifications, including quitting smoking, increasing exercise, or altering their diet, significantly impact how the disease develops. Since it is challenging to make significant changes while relatives continue to smoke and prepare unhealthy food, researchers are going to investigate the impact of environmental factors. The second project will concentrate on determining how our socioeconomic situation and physical environment can improve or worsen our health. In dangerous neighbourhoods with high unemployment rates, people frequently experience greater levels of loneliness, stress, and debt.

Medical Delta Professor at Leiden University, Andrea Evers, states: ‘This programme will be the first time we explore a lifestyle approach that focuses on behavioural change in the individual and their environment to find the best way to integrate them for maximum health gains’.

Similarly, Andrea Evers is a part of the Leiden Healthy Society Center, which focusses on a collaborative effort from the Municipality of Leiden, Leiden University and a number of other partners to make Leiden's citizens as healthy as possible! Oftentimes, there are large disparities in the situations of different citizens. One elderly person might face entirely different circumstances from another. In addressing this, the Leiden Healthy Society Center uses multiple approaches, from increasing citizen participation in health initiatives, to workshops and trainings helping citizens attain a better lifestyle, and enabling patients to measure their own blood pressure. All of these development ensure Leiden will become a healthier, more vital city! For more information about the Leiden Healthy Socier Center, you can consult the following article: https://www.universiteitleiden.nl/en/news/2022/11/leiden-healthy-society-center-making-leiden-the-healthiest-city-in-the-netherlands