PhD dissertation Tetiana Stepurko 

Gifts, tips and bribes to health care providers are common in many countries in Central and Eastern Europe. This thesis studies these informal patient payments in Bulgaria, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Romania and Ukraine. It appears that “gifts and bribes” continue to exist in these countries despite reforms of the health care sector.  The extent of the payment differs: they are more widespread in Romania and Ukraine than in Bulgaria and Poland.

That medical treatments work better for some patients than for others is becoming increasingly evident in clinical practice. This ‘patient heterogeneity’, however, is being largely ignored when deciding whether a certain treatment should be reimbursed. The argument: when using economic evaluations to reach a reimbursement decision by the government, the necessary data to consider individual cases is simply lacking. In his dissertation, Bram Ramaekers proves that it is indeed possible to determine the cost-effectiveness of a particular treatment, such as proton therapy for head and neck carcinoma, in specific patient subgroups. “I think this is the way forward.”

Overweight? Exercise is not the answer

In Body
Wednesday, 11 September 2013 07:30
Valedictory lecture by Klaas Westerterp

Trying to drop a few kilos by heading to the gym or going for a jog twice a week? Forget it. You won’t lose weight from exercising – but you will from eating less. “The problem is overeating to begin with. Once you’re overweight already, the problem is usually irreversible.” This is what Klaas Westerterp, professor of Human Energetics, will have to say in his valedictory lecture ‘Energiebalans in beweging’ on 12 September.

PhD dissertation Joanne Leerlooijer

Sexuality is a taboo subject in many countries in Africa and Asia. Not talking about it can lead to problems, among others for young people who become sexually active or unplanned pregnant.

Turning the spotlight on excellence

In Society
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 00:00
Who would nowadays dare to claim that science is still a man's world? It is, after all, 2013. Yet on closer inspection, you don’t have to be a rampant feminist to make this claim. Women continue to be underrepresented in academic leadership – across the European Union, only 18% of full professors are women. There is some good news though. In the online databaseAcademiaNet, excellent female researchers are deliberately put in the spotlight. Because in addition to a lack of women leaders, we are wanting in the tools necessary to identify outstanding women academics. AcademiaNet strives to fill that void.

‘A suitcase full of memories’

In Body
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 00:00
This April, Joep Geraedts retired as professor of Clinical Genetics and Cell Biology at Maastricht University. In the 30-plus years that he worked at UM, the developments in his field have been spectacular. Take the unravelling of the mysteries of DNA, for example: “If you had asked me 30 years ago whether I thought I’d witness that, I would have said no. Something that used to take four years of PhD research can now be done in one afternoon by a computer. In terms of technology there are few obstacles left; the issues we now face are rather on the legal and ethical fronts. I think we’ll be dealing with those for the next 30 years.”

“Preaching the Maastricht gospel”

In Money
Thursday, 28 February 2013 09:10
There was no need for a headhunter this time. Jan Kees Dunning read the ad in the newspaper and thought: “This job was made for me.” He applied for the position and, after eight rounds of interviews with the many stakeholders in the Maastricht Health Campus, was appointed as its new CEO on 1 February. As the Amsterdam native puts it, “They wanted someone from outside the region.” 

The science of education

Wednesday, 20 February 2013 15:47
Thirty-seven years after its founding, the marriage between Maastricht University and Problem-Based Learning (PBL) has proven to be a happy one. In fact, without this education system there would have been no university at all. The launch of the medical faculty in 1974 depended on the ability to create something new and unprecedented in the Dutch academic world. Although PBL was initially deemed 'soft' and even 'alternative' by academics elsewhere, learning in small groups is now becoming a widespread phenomenon in universities all over the world. Maastricht, however, remains the forerunner: here, PBL is part of the university's genetic structure.

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