Behavioral expertise key to effective lifestyle policy

Editorial Medicalfacts/ Janine Budding August 5, 2022 – 07:48

The importance of a healthy lifestyle is structurally underexposed, the corona pandemic made it painfully clear. Much more attention should be paid to the expertise around behavior change in one of the biggest societal challenges: encouraging people to adopt a healthy lifestyle and prevention, especially in times of Covid. Even if it was just that during the crisis it became clear again that informing or advising people is not enough when it comes to effective policy. A change in lifestyle is, after all, a change in behaviour. Therefore, twelve recognized behavioral experts call for action: Use primarily behavioral expertise in the development and implementation of lifestyle interventions and policy. Only then will we achieve our goal of a sustainably healthier Netherlands.

Behavioral science expertise

So far, behavioral science expertise has been used to a limited extent to keep healthcare inclusive, affordable and functioning. Policy measures and interventions are introduced without behavioral science knowledge and thus lose their effectiveness. Many programs or initiatives miss the mark. In it position paper:Behavioral expertise is the key to effective lifestyle policy’, Endorsed by many leading organizations and experts, behaviorists make it clear that it is crucial to make the role of behavior an indispensable part of prevention and care.

Now is the time to use the behavioral science knowledge available in the Netherlands for prevention. The corona crisis has shown that behavioral change is essential. Behavioral scientists know how to effectively support behavioral change and thus achieve a healthier and more vital Netherlands for all, but then it is essential that behavioral expertise is used much better in policy and intervention development.

The behavioral experts who prepared the position paper:

Andrea Evers (Professor of Health Psychology, Leiden University and Medical Delta Professor of Healthy Society, Leiden University/TU Delft/Erasmus University), Pepijn van Empelen (Social Psychologist, TNO), Marieke Adriaanse (Professor of Behavioral Interventions in Population Health Management, Leiden University /LUMC) Aarnout Brombacher (Professor of Design Theory and Information Flow Analysis, Eindhoven University of Technology), Lex Burdorf (Professor of Determinants of Public Health, Erasmus MC), Lisette Gemert-van Pijnen (Professor of Persuasive Health Technology, University of Twente), Stef Kremers (Professor of Health Promotion, Maastricht University), Anne Roefs (Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience of Abnormal Eating, Maastricht University) Jaap Seidell (Professor of Nutrition and Health, VU Amsterdam), Sabita Soedamah-Muthu (Associate Professor, Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences), Karien Stronks (Professor Public Health, Amsterdam UMC) and Emely de Vet (Professor of Consumptio n and Healthy) lifestyle, WUR)

Source: TNO

Editorial Medicalfacts/ Janine Budding

I specialize in interactive news for health care providers, so that health care providers are informed every day of the news that may be relevant to them. Both lay news and news specific to healthcare providers and prescribers. Social media, Women’s Health, Patient advocacy, patient empowerment, personalized medicine & Care 2.0 and the social domain are spearheads for me to pay extra attention to.

I studied physiotherapy and health economics. In addition, I am a registered independent client supporter and informal care broker. I have extensive experience in various positions within the healthcare, social domain and the medical, pharmaceutical industry, nationally and internationally. And has broad medical knowledge of most specialties within the healthcare system. And of the health laws, from which the health service is regulated and financed. Every year I attend most of the leading medical conferences in Europe and America to keep my knowledge up to date and to keep up with the latest developments and innovations. I am currently working on a master’s in applied psychology.

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