Whether it is data sharing between healthcare organisations, assistive technologies aiding patients with dementia or technology aiding specialist in surgery, the digital and technological revolution is creating a paradigm shift in healthcare. For example, advances in data collection and storage, e.g. in the form of electronic health records or medical devices, have created tremendous opportunities for new discoveries within the field of health care. In addition, the increasing amount of available technological devices that support patients and their (in)formal caregivers are driving healthcare innovations. Health care research will have to reflect these advancements in technology.
Since 2018, I am working as an assistant professor at the Living Lab in Ageing and Long-Term Care AWO-ZL, part of the Maastricht University. Our Living Lab was established by Maastricht University in 1998. To date, Maastricht University, nine large long-term care organisations, Gilde Intermediate Vocational Training Institute, VISTA College (secondary vocational education) and Zuyd University of Applied Sciences participate in this Living Lab. Our mission is to improve by means of scientific research: (1) quality of life for older people and their families; (2) quality of care; and (3) quality of work for those employed in long-term care (Verbeek et al., 2019)
My research line is primarily focused on the use of data accumulated in long-term care for older adults. With the use of innovative, data-driven explorations we can increase our knowledge on quality of care, quality of life and quality of work in long-term care for older adults.
Questions that interest me and that are related to my research line:
Which role can data (and the analyses thereof) play in studying quality: i.e. how can these types of data improve the quality of care, quality of life and quality of work in long-term care for older adults?*
How can text-mining support and deepen our understanding on quality of care, quality of life and quality of work in long-term care settings? For example by analysing electronic health records.*
How can we combine data from various sources (e.g. electronic health records, sensors, wearables etc) in order to acquire innovative insights regarding long-term care for older adults including nursing homes?*
In my role as a researcher, I am also a so-called Linking Pin at Cicero Zorggroep. A Linking Pin focuses on stimulating scientific research within a long-term care organisation. Our role is to coordinate scientific research and corresponding teaching activities, lead a multidisciplinary working group of LTC professionals, and together with staff and older people assist in identifying problems in practice that need further investigation by means of scientific research.
In my current job, I spend half my time on research, and half my time on education. However, combining those two is one thing I really love. Regarding education, I am a committee member of ‘Digital Technology and Care’. This committee is aimed at setting-up a new bachelor and master trajectory as part of the Health Sciences program. After the first introductory and general year, students will start the second year with this specialization. In addition, I am also working as a ‘linking-pin’ at a long-term care organisation. Here, I intertwine daily care practice with scientific with research.
On this website you will find, among other things, my portfolio and a list of my publications including downloadable PDFs or links to websites in case of online articles. In addition, also some of my datavisualisations are displayed here even as my blog posts.
Interests in keywords
Data-driven explorations (incl. text-mining), R(stats) (learning Python), Quality of Care, Long-term Elderly Care, Nursing Home Care, Statistical Analysis, Qualitative Research, Technology Acceptance & Implementation 🤖, Ethics.
You can also find my work @
https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3121-412X https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Sil_Aarts https://www.maastrichtuniversity.nl/s.aarts