Belgian Health Status Project [HSR]

Last updated on 16-3-2018 by Pierre Daubresse

Sciensano's project investigator(s):

In short

The main goal of public health policy is to protect and promote population health. Therefore, understanding how healthy the Belgians are in general is crucial. Several research projects in Belgium focus on specific aspects of health and health determinants, but currently a holistic view lacks. In order to properly support evidence-based policy making, those project’s outcomes must be combined in an integrated view of the Belgian health status. Therefore, we develop a dynamic tool for centralising information on key indicators of health and health determinants. We will publish the results in the first-ever health status report for Belgium.

Project summary

The Belgian Health Status Project will address the lack of an integrated view on the health status of the Belgian population. It will provide health status information relevant for decision-makers, with focus on information useful for defining and/or evaluating health objectives.

Objectives and scope

The aim is not to make an exhaustive inventory of all available information, nor to replace existing topic-specific reports. Indeed, rather than being a pure description, significant facts will be highlighted with the help of trends, ranking and benchmarking.

The scope of the health status project will comprise information on health status (e.g., mortality, morbidity, disability, quality of life, summary measures of population health) and health determinants (e.g., health behaviours and socio-economic background). Information on health system performance is covered by the Health Systems Performance Assessment project. In the initial phase, only information sufficiently complete and valid will be used. The focus will be on topics for which indicators are well studied and data are readily available. The scope will then be progressively expanded.


Information on the health status in Belgium will be made available in two distinct, but interlinked ways – i.e., a dynamic health indicators website (“portal”) and a printable Health Status Report (HSR).

In collaboration with the Belgian Health Care Knowledge Centre (KCE) and National Institute for Health and Disability Insurance (NIDHI), a common website will be developed to present the results of the HSR and the Health System Performance Assessment (HSPA) report. In the HSR, a selection of relevant health indicators will be grouped into meaningful chapters (for instance mortality, morbidity, etc.). For each indicator, data will be presented using dynamic visualizations and tables, with breakdowns according to relevant stratification levels (e.g., age, sex, and region). Summary fact sheets will interpret the results, and will provide links to the original data sources. A first version of the online HSR is expected to be launched in 2018. The website will be progressively developed, and regular updates are foreseen as new values become available. The online HSR will therefore provide a continuous view on the health status of the Belgian population.

The printable HSR will provide a snapshot of the Health Status of the Belgian population in a given year. The report will be based on the online fact sheets, and complemented with interpretive summaries and policy conclusions. The first version of the report is expected to be launched end 2018.

Associated Health Topics

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