The academic nature of VU University Medical Center is reflected in the assistance offered to those suffering from rare diseases and to patients who require intensive and complex care, in the form of tertiary clinical care and tertiary referral-center care. More than half of all patients are from outside the Amsterdam area. In addition, VU University Medical Center is an urban and regional hospital which provides regular, specialist care to the inhabitants of its basic service area.
Scientific research and patient care are based on five pivotal points, including patient care, training, educational programs and research. The major feature is that various departments and units participate in the pivotal points. The lines of scientific research within each of the pivotal points are brought together in a multidisciplinary research institute.
The pivotal points and associated research institutes in VU University Medical Center are:
cancer and immunology
- VU University Medical Center Institute for Cancer and Immunology (V- ICI)
- Interdisciplinary Research Institutes Neuroscience Campus Amsterdam
vital functions (heart and blood vessels, metabolism, IC, trauma surgery)
- Institute for Cardiovascular Research (ICaRVU)
extramural and transmural
- Institute for Research in Extramural Medicine (EMGO)
- MOVE is an inter-faculty joint venture between VU University Medical Center, the Faculty of Human Movement Sciences and the Academic Center for Dentistry Amsterdam (ACTA)
Tertiary clinical care is uncommon, expensive care of the highest quality. It is only available in university medical centers and in some major general hospitals. In VU University Medical Center such care is provided in areas such as neonatology (intensive care for neonates), in vitro fertilization (test-tube fertilization), stem cell transplants, percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty and open-heart surgery, radiotherapy, kidney dialysis and the care of HIV patients.
Patients are specifically referred to university medical centers for a type of care known as tertiary referral-center care. This type of care is innovative, by its very nature. It is the result of close collaboration between patient care and scientific research. VU University Medical Center specializes in cancer of the head and neck, high-risk pregnancies, transsexuality, trauma surgery, growth and puberty disorders, and the use of PET scans, special MRI diagnosis, and high-dose chemotherapy for cancer patients.
Photo: Marc van Heerde, pediatrician and member of the children's IC unit . "VUmc offers me the opportunity to develop my skills as a clinician, specializing in intensive care for seriously ill children. I am also encouraged to carry out scientific research into a sub-discipline of acute pediatrics."
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