Technology-supported transition in healthcare

Convergence challenge

“Technology-supported Transitions in Health Care” connects the next generation of technology for health to the transition of the health care system. This theme connects engineering and the social sciences to bridge the gap between science and society in general. Health technologies – such as visualization tools, (minimally invasive) implantation, virtual models, robotics, decision support tools, and next generation advanced medicinal products – can promote and maintain health for all. It unlocks radically new solutions and care applications. The insights and methods of the social sciences are indispensable for the outcomes of technology-supported health care.


Our community brings together research and innovation in health technology with scholars involved in research that structures and evaluates how technology transforms health care. They ensure the optimal outcomes of technology-supported care by creating new scientific understanding of the workings of health care technology in the future health care system and by developing new methods to evaluate the societal impact of technologies.

The community encompasses engineers and scientists from several disciplines: engineering, data science, medicine, design studies, health economics, communication sciences, policy and governance sciences, psychology, sociology and ethics. These scholars will work with societal partners, such as citizens (including people from vulnerable groups and areas), healthcare professionals, companies (technology, data, care, health-insurance), municipalities, care providers, regulators, policy makers and payers, a.o. in hospital and city labs.



This theme encompasses fundamental research into the health system of the future, the development of methods to evaluate the impact of technology, and the design of new models of care. Anchoring the development of the future health care system in engineering and design will increase the positive societal impact of health technology. Breaking down the barriers between engineering and the social sciences is an important part of this research. Key challenges in the theme are:

  • to tailor technologies to the end-user
  • to establish a more rigorous evidence base for the value of technologies to society
  • to reduce the time to market
  • to realize earlier adoption
  • to stimulate wider implementation
  • to more sustainably embed technologies into the healthcare system.

Health technologies can promote and maintain health for all. It unlocks radically new solutions and care applications.

Research areas

A few research areas are listed below:

From Reactive to Proactive Care

Successful proactive care like early detection, prediction and prevention will, in the long-term, be more efficient, effective and lead to a healthier society than any reactive care: better to prevent than to repair. This transition will redefine functions and content of healthcare: healthcare will not only be oriented towards the moment when a specific person is ill, but it will include life course care and prevention, e.g., lifestyle, for healthy people with a continuous character. Functions like (digital personal) ‘case’ managers will appear, new business models will arise, and people will be empowered to uptake preventive care.

Transition from Group-based to Personalized Care

With a combination of methods for personalized medicine and person-centered care, interventions will be optimally aligned in content, form, and timing to the actual health status, context of living, needs, capabilities and preferences of patients. Research to personalized care aims to enable inclusive technological innovation avoiding growing health disparities (socio- economic, tech/non tech), and to optimize individual treatment, tele monitoring, revalidation, and prevention interventions. Thereby a more holistic understanding of a person’s health and well-being, capabilities, needs, preferences, and the environment that they find themselves in, is the basis for person-centered integrated care.

Transition from Hospital towards Home

Hospitals will develop into centers for treatment of acute complex cases, including specialist care with high-tech technologies. People will increasingly be able to receive and interact with healthcare by monitoring, diagnosing, treating, and revalidating at home. Past developments make it possible to monitor, predict, and intervene with preventive interventions for one specific disease (i.e., Lifestyle based cardio prevention for (pre) pregnant women and CBT-based mental health prevention for youngster). Future developments that are envisioned are realization of the consultation room 2030 and the personalisation of interventions to moment, clinical content and user.