After 7 years of clinical work-experience and medical specialist training, my career in research started in 2009 with my MSc Epidemiology thesis project at McGill University, Montreal, on nosocomial rotavirus infections. Rotavirus epidemiology and vaccination has formed the core of my research ever since, moving from observational studies on rotavirus hospitalizations and identifying key risk-groups, to health economic evaluation of universal and targeted rotavirus vaccination, and most recently to the Risk-Group Infant Vaccination Against Rotavirus project (RIVAR-study).
This large, multicentre project for which I chair the research group, pilots rotavirus vaccination implementation in secondary pediatric care for medical target-groups to evaluate impact and effectiveness. Enrolment started in December 2014. Since completion of my PhD in January 2013, my research scope also includes other common childhood infections with a large public health impact (respiratory tract infections, gastroenteritis and dengue). My public health research group pursues research that quantifies their disease burden, identifies risk factors and predictive features, or evaluates existing prevention strategies, both in the general pediatric population and in specific medical target-groups. In collaboration with the RIVM a joined project on optimalization of the national immunization schedule for premature infants (PRIEMA-study) was recently launched. In 2015, I obtained a VENI grant to study rotavirus transmission in households with young children and the potential impact of rotavirus vaccination on population transmission.