Centre for Healthy Living in the Netherlands: Building sustainable capacity and alliances for effective health promotion (2018)




The National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) Centre for Healthy Living serves as the national hub for integrated expertise on health promotion in The Netherlands. Key activities are a systematic procedure to assess the quality of interventions, a web portal complemented by specific websites and tailored face-to-face support, training and coaching.

It is an example of how a national government has taken up its stewardship role for health promotion, shaped by both local government responsibilities and a variety of theme-specific health promotion institutes operating nationally. Based in the RIVM, the Centre works with a wide range of partners within and outside the health sector. It gathers, enriches and disseminates knowledge, which is then “translated” into practical tools that can be applied at grassroots level.

An evaluation has demonstrated the Centre’s success in fostering coherent health promotion in The Netherlands. Its systematic approach to assessing the quality of interventions is instrumental in advancing intersectoral health promotion policy and practice across the country. Each month, an average of 14 000 individuals access it on the Gezondleven.nl web portal, and 5000 individuals access the intervention database.