How do occupational therapists stay up-to-date when caring for older people living at home?

As an occupational therapist, how do you ensure that older people can continue to live independently and safely at home for as long as possible? That they can continue to drive their own car? Or that they can use public transport when that is no longer possible? To better support occupational therapists working with older people living at home, Leen Bouckaert & her colleagues drew up a clinical guideline. In it, they pour the latest scientific insights on elderly care into concrete recommendations for occupational therapists.
Leen Bouckaert

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Carlos Leonidas

How do wildfires affect your health?

In the last decade, wildfires peaked at record numbers in different countries across the world. These fires destroy houses and burn down forests, but they also have other important 'unseen' effects. "Smoke from wildfires leads to high air pollution, which is associated with short and long-term risks, such as respiratory and cardiac diseases", as Leonidas Leiva explains. He's working on new materials to recognize, capture and neutralize these contaminants.

What does the liver think of artificial feeding?

Artificial feeding, such as parenteral nutrition -food that is injected directly into the bloodstream- is crucial for critically ill patients. It keeps them alive, but unfortunately, it can cause significant liver damage in the long run. To prevent liver injury, Milos Mihajlovic and his colleagues are developing an advanced human liver model in a dish to better understand how food injection leads to liver damage.

3D-printed concrete can be strong and energy-efficient

Did you know that we can build bridges out of concrete with a 3D printer? Yet, this promising technology still faces challenges before it can reach its full potential and be widely used in construction.
VUB researcher Yanjuan Chen explains what these challenges are and how she's working to help overcome them.

Helping enterprises that hold the key to a sustainable world

Have you ever heard of Boyan Slat? At the age of 18, he founded The Ocean Cleanup, an environmental enterprise developing and scaling technologies to rid the oceans of plastic. Environmental entrepreneurs such as Slat and their eco-innovations are the cornerstone of the transition to a more sustainable world. But how can we help them make a bigger impact? That's what Georgios Outsios is determined to find out.

Enemies with benefits: positive effects of mistletoes

When you think of mistletoe, you probably think of the Christmas kissing tradition and ancient druids, while the word parasite may not come to mind. Yet mistletoe is a parasitic plant that grows on the branches of numerous tree species, from which it draws water and nutrients. This can lead to serious damage to this host tree. Still, we should not hastily remove mistletoe from these trees, says Luiza Teixeira-Costa. Watch her explain the positive side of this 'enemy with benefits'. 

Social entrepreneurship - the world's remedy

Societal enterprises, working on alleviating societal issues such as poverty, exclusion, and pollution, face many challenges. "They are often unrecognized, unsupported, and undervalued", says Stefan Chichevaliev (VUB). He is investigating how the current business environment affects the day-to-day operation of social enterprises. His goal is to identify what is needed to help these enterprises meet these challenges, to the benefit of the most vulnerable.

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