Healthcare is facing major challenges. There is an increasing number of older adults with multiple chronic conditions. The research group focuses on how older people with chronic conditions can continue to live in their homes and function independently for as long as possible and how nurses can contribute to this.

Lines of research within the research group

The various research projects of this group seek to contribute to the early detection and prevention of loss of function among older adults living at home. One example is the proactive and integrated elderly care programme Om U (‘About You’), which was developed and evaluated by more than 200 regional general practitioners, district nurses and the social sector. In addition, research is being conducted into the early detection and prevention of medication-related problems in the home situation. The timely recognition of exacerbations and the enhancement of self-management in patients with COPD is central to the M-ACZiE study, which is developing an evidence-based app for this purpose.


  • M-ACZiE: self-management of exacerbations in patients with COPD external link
  • Basic Care Revisited: Better nutritional care for the elderly before, during and after hospitalisation

The aim of this line of research is to further develop and implement the 'PREDOCS programme' in several hospitals in the Netherlands. In addition, the U-Pact project is aimed at conducting research into the timely detection of symptoms of depression among people who have recently suffered a stroke. Various regional Stroke services are collaborating with us in this project, along with international partners.


  • Detection of depression in the early stage of stroke: new opportunities in nursing care (PhD research U-Pact)

The challenges and issues in healthcare require the further professionalisation of (district) nurses. Given a rapidly changing context, autonomous professionals are needed who consider learning to be an ongoing process. Leadership at all levels needs to be able to steer towards improving patient outcomes. Research is being conducted together with national partners into job differentiation within nursing; and within the Academische Werkplaats Verpleegkunde in de Wijk (Academic Workplace for Nursing in the Neighbourhood), we are investigating projects for collaborative learning by practice and the possible role of leadership. The research group is also a participant of the Wetenschappelijk Programma Wijkverpleging (Scientific Programme for Neighbourhood Nursing).



We translate our research results and findings into educational programmes. In this way, students from associated programmes (nursing, MANP, Nursing Science) are supported in offering high-quality care to their patients.

Two senior citizens sitting in a garden Carin de Kok

“And together with the Research group Proactive care for older people living at home, we are working on proactive healthcare for older people. What makes this all so unique is that it allows us to bundle our knowledge and skills.”

Carin de Kok General practitioner and medical director Coöperatie Huisartsen Stad (HUS)


The Research group Proactive care for older people living at home works closely together with the Institute for Nursing Studies. The research group is closely associated with the Department of Nursing Science UMC Utrecht and works together with UMCU, HU, Careyn, Axioncontinu, De Rijnhoven and Leidsche Rijn Julius Healthcare Centres, for the Academische Werkplaats Verpleegkunde in de Wijk.

Our professors and researchers

Nienke Bleijenberg PhD | Professor | Research group Chronic Diseases

Nienke Bleijenberg

Professor Proactive care for older people living at home Show profile

Wietske Blom-Ham

Researcher Proactive care for older people living at home Show profile

Debbie ten Cate

Researcher Proactive care for older people living at home Show profile
Thóra Hafsteinsdóttir PhD | Researcher | Research group Chronic Diseases

Thóra Hafsteinsdóttir

Researcher Proactive care for older people living at home Show profile

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