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dr. N. (Nienke) Bleijenberg Assistant Professor

  • Department of Public Health, Healthcare Innovation & Evaluation and Medical Humanities (PHM)

N. Bleijenberg


Research Programs



Nienke Bleijenberg, RN, PhD, is an assistant professor Nursing Science at the University Medical Center Utrecht and a professor (In Dutch: Lector) at the University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, the Netherlands. She worked for many years as a district nurse in Utrecht with mostly geriatric patients living at home with high complex care needs. During her work it became apparent to her that scientific knowledge is needed in order to change and improve the care for older people and the gap between knowledge and practice. During her PhD study she developed a multicomponent proactive primary care program to enhance daily functioning of multimorbid, frail older people. In an ambitious randomized controlled trial, 52 primary care centers, over 3000 patients and more than 350 caregivers participated. Moreover, Dr. Bleijenberg developed a training program for the nurses in collaboration with the University of Applied Sciences Utrecht. During her work as a PhD student Nienke completed the Post Graduate Master Epidemiology at Utrecht University. Since 2014 she works one-day a week at Leidsche Rijn Julius Health Care Centers to implement the care program and enhance clinical practice. Since 2012 she is involved as a teacher and coordinator at the master Clinical Health Sciences, Nursing Science (UU). Since 2014 she is a yearly visiting scholar at University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Division of Geriatrics, working with Dr Kenneth Covinsky and Dr Alexander Smith.

Her current research program focuses on the preservation of daily functioning, prevention of acute events, and improving quality of care and patient outcomes of frail older people and those with multimorbidity living at home. Futhermore, she is focusing on the role, impact and patient outcomes of district nursing care. Nienke is a supervisor of 5 PhD students, receveid 11 grants (2.1M)  She has published over 30 international peer reviewed publications, 15 practice publications and contributed to three book publications.  Her knowledge extends to nursing, geriatrics in primary care, home care, and epidemiology

Nienke is a member of the National Association of Nurses, and a fellow of the European Association of Nursing Scientists. She is currently chair of the research group Care for Older people at the University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, the Netherlands


Side Activities

    • Visiting scholar University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Divison of Geriatrics and School of Nursing
    • Member of the Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI), Honor Society of Nursing, Rho Chi Chapter at large.
    • Member European Academy of Nursing Science (EANS).
    • Counselor for the Rho Chi Chapter at large, Nursing Science Utrecht and University Medical Center Utrecht.
    • Member European REFLECTION NETWORK for development and evaluation of complex interventions.

Fellowship and Awards

Research Output (6)

Measurement properties of the EQ-5D across four major geriatric conditions:Findings from TOPICS-MDS

Lutomski Jennifer E., Krabbe Paul F M, Bleijenberg N., Blom Jeanett, Kempen Gertrudis I J M, MacNeil-Vroomen Janet, Muntinga Maaike E., Steyerburg Ewout, Olde Rikkert Marcel G M, Melis René J.F., Bleijenberg N., Blom J. W., Melis R.J.F., Muntinga M. E., Steyerberg Ewout W., Gussekloo J., Olde Rikkert Marcel G M, van den Brink D., Lutomski J.E., Qin L., Kempen G. I.J.M., Krabbe P. F M, Buurman B.M., van der Horst H.E., de Rooij S.E.J.A., Schols Jos M. G. A., Schuurmans M. J., Smilde D. A., 3 mrt 2017, In: Health and Quality of Life Outcomes [E]. 15

Examining the construct and known-group validity of a composite endpoint for the Older Persons and Informal Caregivers Survey Minimum Data Set (TOPICS-MDS); A largescale data sharing initiative

Hofman Cynthia S., Lutomski Jennifer E., Boter Han, Buurman Bianca M., De Craen Anton J M, Donders A Rogier T, Rikkert Marcel G M Olde, Makai Peter, Melis René J.F., Bleijenberg N., Blom J. W., Kempen G. I J M, Krabbe P. F M, Moll van Charante E.P., Muntinga M. E., Steyerberg Ewout W., Gussekloo J., van der Horst H.E., Olde Rikkert Marcel G M, de Rooij S.E.J.A., Schols Jos M. G. A., Schuurmans M. J., Smilde D. A., Van Den Brink D., Qin L., 1 mrt 2017, In: PLoS ONE [E]. 12

Developing & evaluating complex interventions- evidence-based examples and improved methodology

Bleijenberg N., Ettema R. G. A., de Man-van Ginkel J. M., Korpershoek Y. J. G., Smit L., Verstraten C. J. M. M. sep 2016, In: Journal of Advanced Nursing. 72 , p. 46-46

Unravel the intervention components of proactive nurse-led care interventions for older persons

Smit L., Bleijenberg N., Schuurmans M. J. sep 2016, In: Journal of Advanced Nursing. 72 , p. 47-47

Frail Older Adults' Experiences With a Proactive, Nurse-Led Primary Care Program:A Qualitative Study

Bleijenberg Nienke, Boeije Hennie R., Onderwater Astrid T., Schuurmans Marieke J. 2015, In: Journal of Gerontological Nursing. 41 , p. 20-29 10 p.

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