Our work

Boosting the impact of digital health

Digital health is considered the ‘holy grail’ of effective and sustainable health(care). Digital health is defined as the use of the latest technology, apps and data to support and improve health. TNO wants to give the impact of digital health an added boost.

Tools give both patients and healthy people support and advice concerning their health and lifestyle. In addition, the data and insights gained from the tools are used by care providers, policymakers and scientists to create better predictive models. We see that more impact can be realised by focusing on four areas of digital health:

  • Personalised design of digital health is important in increasing and maintaining as well as supporting health-enhancing behaviour.
  • Validated and reliable predictive models for health and disease. TNO integrates data on individuals, large health databases and domain knowledge into a comprehensive overview.
  • Advanced data profiling via new and existing (big) data science techniques to make the technologies robust.
  • Data privacy and security for the protection of users, without compromising interoperability and standardisation.

Digital health and P4 health

TNO uses the P4 model for digital health research: Prevention, Personalisation, Prediction and Participation. Privacy is a prerequisite for all the P’s. At TNO there are three areas of application that are central to the P4 model: ‘Healthy youth’ (healthcare for infants, children and young people), ‘Sustainable employability’ (working people) and ‘Metabolic health’ (nutrition, supplements, drugs, etc.).

More impact through personalised design

TNO works with knowledge institutions, universities and companies to create methods that enable a more personalised design of digital health applications and make digital health more effective.

  • Like the effective behavioural change strategies applied by TNO in ‘The Engagement Game’, a serious game for managers to encourage engagement among employees and limit work-related stress.
  • TNO also uses interaction strategies to ensure that premature dropout is prevented. For children with type 1 diabetes there is the ‘PAL project’ (Personal Assistant for a healthy Lifestyle): a personal robot as buddy with an avatar and app.
  • Furthermore, TNO has developed and tested the European ‘Power2DM’ project whereby people with Type 2 Diabetes can be coached adaptively.

As a final example, TNO has designed the ‘SamenStarten’ (Starting Together) decision support system [LINK NAAR PAGINA] that provides support to parents and care providers in bringing up children.

Digital Health, privacy and big data

 TNO uses various pilots to test with partners the feasibility of ‘theoretical’ privacy in practice.

  • Like PIME, a privacy dashboard for pregnant women in the province of Noord-Holland, whereby the users decide themselves which healthcare data they wish to share with others.
  • In concrete pilots like the ‘Prana-Data’ project, TNO and partners are promoting a shift in the general discussion away from ‘big data against privacy’ to ‘big data with privacy’.

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More information?

For more information about what we do in the area of ‘Personalised Digital Health’ and where collaboration with us might benefit you, please contact us.

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