Published on October 22nd 2018 – Hanneke Hendriks was recently interviewed for the TV/web-program Medialogica by HUMAN, where she discussed how alcohol-related posts on social media by vloggers could impact young people. The interview was related to the Veni Project by Hanneke Hendriks, in which she investigates what young people post on social media, what the […] Read more »

Published on September 27th 2018 – Gert-Jan de Bruijn has been awarded a grant from ZonMw and Diabetes Foundation within the Diabetes breakthrough programme  call. The main purpose of this call is to fund innovative research that can lead to breakthrough results for curing or preventing diabetes type II. Together with Nynke van der Laan, […] Read more »

Published on September 11 2018 – Cyberchondria refers to the mutual relation between searching for online health information and related fears and worries about one’s own health. Research into the role of cyberchondria is important, because nowadays consider the internet to be their primary source of health-related information, even before their general practitioner. Even though the […] Read more »

Published on August 20th 2018 – Patient participation is important for an effective conversation between doctor and patient. A patient who actively participates during the conversation, generally reports the most positive outcomes. A recent study done by Sanne Schinkel and colleagues reveals that migrants with a non-Western background experience more and different barriers to actively participate […] Read more »

Published on August 6th 2018 – Hanneke Hendriks and colleagues have recently published two articles in Journal of Medical Internet Research andCyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking. Both articles focus on the role of alcohol-related posts on social networking sites such as Facebook and Instagram. Examples of such posts are photos showing people having dinner with […] Read more »

Published on July 23th 2018 – The research project Supreme Nudge, which will be conducted by a large consortia consisting of several Dutch universities, companies, and organizations, is a five-year project which attempts to prevent (risk for) cardiovascular disease in adults from lower socio-economic status. How this will be achieved, is now available in a […] Read more »

Published on July 10th 2018 – With her research into the Veder Contact Method, Petra Boersma won the “Wij Inholland award” in the category Research. On 27 June she received the award and accompanying check of € 5.000, – by Huug de Deugd, chairman of the jury and member of the Executive Board of Inholland University […] Read more »

Published on June 15th 2018 – On Friday June 1st, the fifth symposium of the Amsterdam Center for Health Communication (ACHC) took place in Amsterdam. This time the symposium was titled ‘Digital (big) data and health communication: how research and practice are changing” and was chaired by Remco Sanders. Read more »

Published on May 31st 2018 – Two ACHC researchers were awarded at the conference of the International Communication Association (ICA) 2018 in Prague. Read more »

Published on May 28th 2018 – Everyday life is increasingly taking place online, including health-related actions. Examples of that include posting on health-related discussion fora, the use of smart devices to track our physical activity, and even sensor-enabled clothing to register bodily movements. All of those actions leave behind a wealth of digital traces, causing […] Read more »

Published on May 21 2018 – Hans Brug has received EUR 9.5 million from the European Commission to investigate how combat (severe) overweight among youth. In a large consortium of 14 universities and organizations from Europe, South Africa, Australia and the United States, intensive collaborations with youth will be sought to find new ways to […] Read more »

Published on April 17 2018 –  The Kentucky Conference on Health Communication  (KCHC)  in Lexington was a great success for researchers from the Amsterdam Center for Health Communication (ACHC). Melanie de Looper, together with Julia van Weert, Ellen Smets (AMC-UvA), Olga Damman  and Daniëlle Timmermans (both  VUmc) won two awards, i.e. the Top Conference Paper […] Read more »

Published on March 23 2018 –  Studies on anxiety within oncology show a high prevalence of anxiety both during and after the course of the disease. However, little is known about factors that influence the level of anxiety in the diagnostic phase. In this study we examined the presence of anxiety during diagnosis and treatment […] Read more »

Published on March 6th 2018 – The University of Amsterdam (UvA) is ranked best in the world in the field of Communication Science and Media Studies in the 2018 QS World University Rankings by Subject. In the latest QS Rankings, which were published on Wednesday, 28 February, Communication & Media Studies jump from 2nd to […] Read more »

Published on February 23rd 2018 – Professor Julia van Weert will be awarded the Lewis Donohew Outstanding Health Communication Scholar Award during the 2018 Kentucky Conference on Health Communication (KCHC). The award was established in Dr. Donohew’s name in 1998 to recognize outstanding research contributions to the health communication field made during the biennium preceding each conference. […] Read more »

Published on February 19th 2018 – On Wednesday February 14 2018, Elroy Boers defended his dissertation entitled: ‘Interpersonal communication among vocational community college students about alcohol use and binge drinking: Causality, content, and conversation partner’. The overall aim of his dissertation was to further our understanding of the effects of interpersonal communication about binge drinking […] Read more »

Published on February 09 2018 – Web-based health behavior change interventions may be more effective if they offer autonomy-supportive communication. However, currently no validated tools exist to assess user-perceived autonomy-support of such interventions. For this reason, ACHC-researcher Eline Smit and colleagues developed and validated a new measurement instrument. The Virtual Care Climate Questionnaire (VCCQ) consist of items […] Read more »

Published on January 30 2018 – Last Saturday January 27, ACHC-researcher Hanneke Hendriks was interviewed in the live radioprogram by Jort Kelder (dr Kelder en Co) on Radio1. She discussed the influence of alcohol on health and society. Hanneke currently investigates the role of alcohol-related posts on social media with a NWO Veni grant. Would […] Read more »

Published on January 17 2018 – Nynke van der Laan received a Creative industry-KIEM grant from the NWO to develop and test a virtual reality game to foster healthy food choices. The KIEM funding instrument is intended to set up a longer-term collaboration between researchers and private partners. This is fostered through the formulation of a […] Read more »

Published on December 18 2017 – Nadine Bol received a travel grant of € 2,300 from the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW). The Academy Van der Gaag Grant was designed to offer promising young researchers who are studying the biological, psychological and social determinants of human behavior the opportunity to travel abroad […] Read more »

Published on December 1st 2017 – On Friday November 24, the fourth symposium of the Amsterdam Center for Health Communication (ACHC) took place in Amsterdam, entitled ‘Tailoring for Health. From theoretical idea to practical intervention’, chaired by Eline Smit.   During the afternoon, speakers working in science and practice have presented about the history of […] Read more »

Published on November 17, 2017 – Related to the symposium ‘Tailoring for Health‘ that will be held next Friday November 24, Nadine Bol, Eline Smit, and Prof. Mia Lustria will be guest-editing a special issue for the scientific open access journal ‘Digital Health’. The special issue is entitled ‘Tailored Health Communications: Opportunities and Challenges in […] Read more »

Published on November 7th 2017 – Informal interpreters are often used in medical settings, when patients and health care providers do not share the same language. Informal interpreters are usually family members of the patients who join the consultation to bridge the language gap. This type of interpreter-mediated communication has shown to be problematic. Therefore, Rena […] Read more »

Published on October 19th 2017 – Intonation, acte de présence and timing are three core concepts in theater performances, but what do they have to do with dementia care? Petra Boersma studied the implementation of theatrical communication in contact with people with dementia and graduated on Friday, October 13 at the Free University in Amsterdam on […] Read more »

Published on September 26 2017 – On Friday November 24th 2017, The Amsterdam Center for Health Communication will organize a symposium, entitled “Tailoring for health: from theoretical idea to practical intervention”. The symposium starts at 12:00 and will end at 18:00 and attendance is free of charge. The symposium will have a mix of speakers from science […] Read more »

Published on September 19 2017 – Minh Hao Nguyen, one of our PhD candidates, received a travel grant of € 3.000 as part of the UvA385 ‘Lustrumbeurs’. Hao was one of the 22 recipients of a UvA lustrum grant, out of 94 candidates. The UvA lustrum grant was designed to offer the new generation of […] Read more »

Published on August 31st 2017 – This summer, Dr. Eline Smit received the prestigious Early Career Award from the European Health Psychology Society (EHPS). The EHPS Early Career Award aims to recognize outstanding research excellence, contributions made to the EHPS and/or contributions to professional practice made by EHPS members within 5 years of their PhD. […] Read more »

Published on August 8th 2017 – Nynke van der Laan is one of nine people who received a replication grant from NWO. With the call ‘Replication Studies’ NWO wishes to contribute to the transparency of research and to the quality and completeness of reporting of results. Nynke is going to replicate a major study of […] Read more »

Published on July 27 2017 – Current-day community pharmacies often present themselves as ‘community healthcare centres’. Communication thereby stresses that pharmacies are more than medication dispensaries alone, and offer multiple health and clinical services, such as illness prevention information, supervision of people with chronic diseases, and in many countries also diagnosis and vaccinations. Meanwhile, community […] Read more »

Published on July 11 2017 – There are a number of established evaluation criteria that allow consumers to assess the quality and reliability of health-related websites. However, consumers do not often use these criteria. Rather, they rely on simple heuristics, such as how nice the layout of the website is and how high the website […] Read more »

Published on June 26 2017 – On Wednesday June 28th 2017, Prof. Dr. John Allegrante will give an invited lecture at the Amsterdam Center for Health Communication entitled ‘ How Many Behavioral Scientists Does it Take to Change a Light Bulb?  Advancing the Science of Behavioral Self-Management of Chronic Disease’ In this lecture, Prof. Dr. Allegrante will describe […] Read more »

Published on June 18 2017 – Private medical specialist providers often invest heavily in marketing communication. Yet very little is known about the effects of marketing communication by medical specialist providers, also internationally. The present study is one of the first to systematically investigate the effects of website marketing by medical specialist providers on patients’ […] Read more »

Published on June 6 2017 – ACHC researchers won several awards at the conference of the International Communication Association (ICA) 2017 in San Diego. Corine Meppelink won the Abby Prestin Dissertation of the Year Award from the Health Communication divisions of the ICA and the National Communication Association (NCA) for her dissertation entitled “Designing Digital […] Read more »

Published on May 21 2017 – In Dutch general practice, practice nurses sub-optimally adhere to evidence-based smoking cessation treatment guidelines. Understanding the factors explaining their sub-optimal adherence is important to develop interventions that can improve their adherence and patients’ subsequent cessation success. Therefore, ACHC-researcher Eline Smit and colleagues explored the association between different socio-cognitive and […] Read more »

Friday, April 21, 2017 – On Tuesday, April 18, 2017, the third ACHC symposium took place in Amsterdam, chaired by Nadine Bol. The main purpose of symposium was to inform both practice and science about the opportunities and challenges of mobile health apps through presentations and interactive discussions. The symposium was made possible by RPA […] Read more »

On Tuesday April 18th 2017,  The Amsterdam Center for Health Communication (ACHC) will organize a symposium entitled “Mobile Health: Challenges and Opportunities”. The symposium starts at 11:45 and will end at 18:00. The symposium is free of charge and will address the effectiveness of mobile health interventions, the technological challenges of mobile health apps, and the privacy and […] Read more »

Published on April 6 2017 – Evidence-based smoking cessation guidelines can help health professionals (such as practice nurses) to provide effective behavioural counseling to their smoking patients. Yet, most practice nurses suboptimally adhere to these guidelines. This limits the effectiveness of their smoking cessation support. Interventions are needed to improve practice nurses’ guideline adherence, to […] Read more »

Published on March 29 2017 – Cancer patients experience many concerns such as fear for the possible side-effects of their treatment. Healthcare providers do not always recognize patients’ expressions of these concerns. Together with colleagues from the Department of Communication Science, Kim Brandes shows that patients describe their concerns as an interplay of instrumental concerns […] Read more »

Published on March 21 2017 – Prior research has shown that personalized health content is more effective than general information, but effects are small. To personalize online health information even better to the recipients’ characteristics and preferences, Hao Nguyen investigated whether tailoring the way information is being presented is a useful addition to personalized communication, […] Read more »

Published on March 13 2017 – The UvA’s Communication and Media Studies programmes have risen to 2nd place amongst universities worldwide in Communication & Media Studies, according to the 2016-17 QS World University Rankings by Subject published on Wednesday, 8 March 2017. With this, UvA Communication Science is only one spot away from being recognised […] Read more »

Published on February 20 2017 – Cigarette packages contain warning labels (e.g., ‘smokers die younger’) that aim to prevent people from smoking and encourage smokers to quit. However, there is an ongoing debate about whether the current warnings are effective. In this study, Saar Mollen and Bas van den Putte examine the effects of textual warning […] Read more »

Published on February 12 2017 – Many migrant patients in the Netherlands with a low Dutch language proficiency bring family members to the general practitioner (GP)’s consultation room to provide interpreting. Although this seems an adequate solution for improving communication, the non-professional family interpreters sometimes create additional obstacles. For instance, family interpreters do not translate […] Read more »

Published on January 28 2017 – This week, the Dutch Heart Foundation and The Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Development ZonMw awarded three consortia 7,5 million euro to investigate how healthy lifestyles can be maintained over a longer period of time. In one of those consortia (entitled Supreme Nudge), ACHC researchers Hans Brug and […] Read more »

Published on January 22 2017 – To promote healthy dietary intake, people can be instructed to formulate planning strategies regarding their diet. Such an instruction usually takes the form of a situation and an action, such as ‘when I am watching TV on my couch in the evening, I will eat an apple instead of […] Read more »

Published on January 16 2017 – Previous research has shown that when cancer patients discuss their concerns with their healthcare provider, these patients have decreased feelings of anxiety and depression among cancer patients. However, most patients find it difficult to express their concerns during consultations. Kim Brandes investigated what prevents and what encourages cancer patients […] Read more »

Thursday, December 15 2016 – On Friday December 9 2016, the second ACHC symposium was held in Amsterdam. The purpose of the symposium was to inform science and practice on the role of social media in alcohol consumption among adolescents in an interactive session, based on recent scientific research and practical experience. The symposium was […] Read more »

The Amsterdam Center for Health Communication (ACHC) will organize a symposium, entitled “Alcohol and Social Networking Sites: Predictors and Effects of Youth’s Online Communication about Alcohol” on Friday December 9th 2016. The symposium starts at 12:30 and lasts until 18:00. Read more »

Published on 15-11-2016 – On November 16th 2016, Iris van Oijen will defend her PhD thesis entitled Packaging Design as Communicator of Product Attributes. Effects on Consumers’ Attribute Inferences. One of her supervisors is ACHC board member Edith Smit. Read more »

Published on November 4th, 2016 – On November 11, 2016, the closing conference of the NWO-program ‘Comprehensible Language and Effective Communication’ will be held. ACHC participants in this project are Bas van den Putte and Simon Zebregs, in cooperation with Anneke de Graaf (Radboud University) and Trimbos Institute.   On November 11, Simon Zebregs and […] Read more »

Published on October 28th, 2016 – People are often influenced by what other do, or think one should do. In health communication these social norms are therefore frequently used to persuade people to engage in healthy behavior. However, not always with the same level of success. Recently Saar Mollen and colleagues studied how social norm […] Read more »

Published on October 10th, 2016 – An increasing amount of cancer patients visit the Internet for information in addition to consulting their health care provider. On the Internet, patients have the option to find information on many different platforms, such as online libraries, blogs or discussion groups. As of yet, little is known about the […] Read more »

Published on October 4th, 2016 – Obesity is a major problem in Western countries, causing a wide variety of chronic diseases, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer. It is therefore vital to employ cost-effective, large-scale interventions to promote healthier lifestyles. In the United States, restaurants are required to use […] Read more »

Older cancer patients are fully able to use Web-based health information tools and perceive these tools as highly useful in their search for health information and to prepare for interpersonal communication with their health care providers. However, older patients experience navigational problems that can hinder optimal user experience with these tools. This recently published study […] Read more »

Up to now, effective adherence interventions are scarce and a more comprehensive model of adherence determinants is required to target determinants for not taking the medication as prescribed. Current approaches only included explicit attitudes such as self-reported evaluations of medication as determinants, neglecting the role of associative processes that shape implicit attitudes. Based on our […] Read more »

Numerous studies of various populations and settings link patient–provider communication or beliefs to medication adherence. A better understanding of this interplay may help to improve patient-centred communication. Read more »

Nadine Bol won the inaugural Annie Lang Dissertation Award at the conference of the International Communication Association in Japan 2016. This award recognizes the most outstanding dissertation in a topic relevant to the Information Systems Division in the preceding year. Nadine’s dissertation was about how to optimally present online information to older cancer patients (> […] Read more »

Op dinsdag 10 mei vond het openingssymposium van het ACHC plaats. Veel belangstellenden vanuit de praktijk en wetenschap kwamen naar de UvA v oor een middag in het teken van effectieve communicatie voor mensen met lage gezondheidsvaardigheden. Read more »

Digital health information is widely available, especially on the Internet, but not everyone fully benefits from this information source due to limited health literacy. This is unfortunate, as people with limited health literacy are a vulnerable group that needs health information the most. Read more »

For the past 4 years, Alexandra Dima and Marijn de Bruin from ASCoR have partnered with 6 European organizations in the ASTRO-LAB project, a European Commission-funded longitudinal cohort study investigating the long-term impact of asthma treatment and self-management on health outcomes in France and the United Kingdom. On the 14th of April, the ASTRO-LAB final […] Read more »

Decision aids increase older adults’ risk perception, improve their knowledge, decrease decisional conflict, and improve older patients’ participation in decision making. This is concluded by a systematic literature review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) evaluating the efficacy of decision aids as compared to usual care or alternative intervention(s) for older adults facing treatment, […] Read more »

Het vinden, begrijpen, beoordelen en gebruiken van gezondheidsinformatie is moeilijk voor mensen met beperkte gezondheidsvaardigheden. Deze groep mensen heeft echter juist baat bij goede gezondheidsinformatie. In het openingssymposium van het Amsterdam Center for Health Communication (ACHC) presenteren we verschillende effectieve strategieën voor het communiceren met deze kwetsbare doelgroep. Read more »

Nadine Bol and Hao Nguyen both won the Philip C. Palm Green Top Student Paper Award at the Kentucky Conference on Health Communication 2016. They received the exact same reviewer score, and the scientific advisory board could not make a final decision between the two papers. The committee therefore decided to award them both with […] Read more »

Web-based smoking cessation interventions can succesfully help smokers to quit. As healthcare professionals, such as general practitioners and practice nurses, often indicate a lack of time and resources to offer their patients extensive face-to-face help for smoking cessation, this study investigated the integration of a web-based intervention in the general practice setting. Read more »

Alexandra Dima received a Marie Curie Individual Fellowship grant from the European Commission (H2020) for interdisciplinary research on Collaborative Self-Management Support (CosMaS) in chronic conditions. She will develop an interdisciplinary model of integrated care in chronic conditions. The new CoSMaS project builds on the current ASTRO-LAB project, which is now in final stages of data analysis […] Read more »

Adolescents are at risk for hearing loss, because they often listen to too loud music. New research by Gert-Jan de Bruijn and colleagues found that adolescent become more motivated to turn down the music volume when they read about short-term negative consequences such as “listening to too loud  music will make you ears ring ears tomorrow”. Read more »

Consumers of online health information often do not question the quality of what they find online and tend to evaluate the information based on criteria not recognized by existing web quality guidelines. People with low health literacy, in particular, use less established criteria and rely more heavily on non-established ones compared to those with high […] Read more »

Much research to date has focused on the effects of using illustrations in (online) health messages, however, none to date has considered the process that precedes these effects. This study uses eye tracking to gain novel insights into how individuals attend to online health information (text and illustrations) and under what conditions this attention leads […] Read more »

General practitioners (GPs), interpreters and Turkish migrant patients  think differently about the role of the family interpreter in GP consultations. Patients have more trust in family interpreters and feel empowered by them, while GPs feel out of control and have little trust in family interpreters. Read more »

During her inaugural lecture on Friday, 22 January, Julia van Weert, professor of Health Communication at the University of Amsterdam (UvA), will launch the new Amsterdam Center for Health Communication (ACHC). The centre aims to improve health by conducting scientific research into effective communication and promoting the implementation of research in the field of health […] Read more »

Julia van Weert will hold an Inaugeral Lecture on how online and offline communication can be used to reach vulnerable patient groups on 22 January 2016. In her lecture, Julia van Weert argues that new technologies can offer added value when used as a supplement to personal communication in the consultation room. In her view, […] Read more »

Dutch adolescents from lower secondary education levels are more likely to engage in alcohol abuse than adolescents from higher education levels. Moreover, they start doing so at an earlier age. For to the Dutch government,  health education materials are an important part of their overall prevention approach. However, the materials that are currently available were […] Read more »

On Christmas Eve, Eline Smit and Julia van Weert received good news: together with Ciska Hoving from Maastricht University, they were awarded a grant from the Dutch Cancer Society for a three-year PhD-project on the effectiveness of message frame tailoring in online smoking cessation communication. Read more »

After successfully defending her PhD thesis last month, Sanne Schinkel – together with Julia van Weert, Barbara Schouten and Maria van den Muijsenbergh from Pharos – was awarded a grant from KWF for a 2-year postdoc project. The project will start right after her maternity leave, in May 2016. Read more »

Providing information to cancer patients is crucial within cancer care, and in the current technology age, this information is increasingly presented through the Internet. As cancer largely affects older adults, it is important to consider aging populations when designing online cancer information materials. In her research, Nadine Bol examined how online cancer information can be […] Read more »