Meeting Report 2019

Health-RI Conference - Opening doors to P4 Health Get set for the digital health and P4 Health revolution 

It was fantastic to see the enthusiasm of the more than 300 academic researchers, health care professionals, IT-specialists, and representatives of patients, industry and policy who gathered together on January 17 at the Jaarbeurs in Utrecht for the 2019 Health-RI Conference.  


Don’t let the SOY hold you back

Keynote speaker Lucien Engelen, CEO at Transform.Health [and fellow at Center for the Edge Deloitte and formerly head of the Radboudumc REshape Center]. 

Lucien Engelen kicked off the meeting with an inspiring keynote lecture. He suggests to add a fifth P to P4 for health: P for Proactive. The big companies are starting to enter healthcare. Developments are going faster and faster. Engelen predicts: “It happened in the hotel business and the taxi world. Now companies are looking to disrupt health care. Start now! Start looking at the day after tomorrow, don’t be held back by the shit of yesterday (SOY). Legacy is not bad, but take and keep leadership.“ 

“In that respect, Health-RI is of great help in leading us to a soft landing into the future of health(care),” says Engelen. The Personal Health Train shows a successful approach towards sustainable global health. “It’s an important step towards bringing stakeholders together to build a national data infrastructure that works for the benefit of all.” 

Lucien Engelen's presentation 'Winter is coming' (Slideshare)


Health-RI takes vision into practice  

Prof. Dr. Wiro Niessen, Chief Technology Officer of Health-RI updated the conference on Health-RI. 

“Health-RI is the initiative in the Netherlands to make healthcare data accessible to support research and initiatives for better health and healthcare for everyone,” says Niessen. He compared a national interconnected data infrastructure with everyday logistics. A well functioning economy starts with a proper infrastructure and Health-RI brings stakeholders together to achieve this for health data.  

So far, all the different stakeholders involved have been brought together and have developed a shared vision for a national data infrastructure. And we already have many excellent initiatives ongoing. Niessen: “In Europe, Health-RI is at the forefront of data infrastructure initiatives. An achievement we should be proud of.”


P4 Health  

Healthcare is changing radically. It has to, faced with the ageing population and endemic chronic disease. We need to translate cutting-edge scientific research into better health.  

At the conference the ways to access research data and resources were explored in four parallel sessions. Each session addressed one of the Ps: Prediction, Prevention, Personalization and Participation, and for each we have made a short, separate report. On the speakers’ pages you can find PDFs of their presentations.   

Click on the session you want to read about: 

Prediction (interview with Wiesje van der Flier, Amsterdam UMC)) 

Participation (interview with Ineke Hazelzet, member of BBMRI-NL Patient and Public Advisory Council) 

Prevention (interview with Vincent Jaddoe, Erasmus MC) 

Personalization (interview with Xander Verbeek, IKNL) 


General Assembly 

The Conference concluded with the General Assembly, which was open to anyone interested. Ways to (inter)connect data collections have been developed and several strong projects are already up and running. It is now time to take further steps. Three lines of action were presented by the Management Board. 

Three Lines of Action 

I: Collective Voice: advocacy for data and data infrastructure in healthcare, single point of contact for researchers, government, and insurers. 


II: Building a National Health Data infrastructure: a FAIR data backbone, techniques for combining data sources (Personal Health Train)  


III: Provide and support shared services: a service point where data services from Health-RI and elsewhere can be obtained.  


Pioneering Health-RI  

The initiative for a national Health Research Infrastructure is gaining momentum this year. Leone Flikweert is appointed 'Health-RI pioneer' (kwartiermaker) with the task to give Health-RI a strong foothold in the Netherlands. Read about her plans for Health-RI in the interview by ZonMw.  


The discussions at the General Assembly gave the Management Board the message to broaden the community and put extra effort in building a broader community of people sharing the same vision and same goal of a proper data-infrastructure. 



The Health-RI Conference has been made possible by our sponsors and the Health-RI partners:  

  • Hartwig Medical Foundation (gold sponsor) 

  • The Hyve (gold sponsor) 

  • Roche Foundation Medicine (gold sponsor) 

  • iVention (gold sponsor) 

  • Quaero Systems (silver sponsor) 

  • Castor EDC (silver sponsor) 

  • A. Menarini Diagnostics (silver sponsor) 

  • MRDM (silver sponsor) 

  • RSRCH (bronze sponsor) 

  • Health~Holland (main partner) 

and its partners BBMRI-NL, ELIXIR-NL, EATRIS-NL, DTL, NFU, SURF, FMS, and Lygature.


Some tweets of January 17th about the Health-RI Conference (#H_RI19):


Visual impression of the day


31 January 2019