News items Royal decoration for Professor Harry van Goor, Professor of Surgery Education

16 April 2024

On Friday, April 12, 2024 Professor Harry van Goor received a royal decoration from the hands of Mayor Slinkman of Berg en Dal.  The mayor surprised Professor Van Goor at the end of an interactive exhibition and following his farewell lecture in the Experience Center of the Radboudumc. Professor Van Goor has been appointed Knight of the Order of the Dutch Lion. 

Harry van Goor bade farewell in his very own style: an interactive exhibition allowed colleagues and other interested parties to learn about virual reality (VR) and digital technologies in healthcare and education. His farewell speech was not called "Very Virtual Real" for nothing. 


Professor Van Goor started as a surgeon in the Department of Surgery in 1994 as a staff member of abdominal abdominal surgery. He received his PhD in 1996 and held various positions within the department and surgical education. During this period he was, among other things, acting Surgery Educator, Chief of Medicine and coordinator of the clinical phase for coassistants. Because of his international surgical teaching activities, he was appointed fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in 2010. In 2013, he was appointed professor of Surgery Education.


Professor Van Goor meant a lot for education within the Medicine program. For example, he was closely involved in the design of the new Bachelor of Medicine curriculum that started in September 2015. An important part of this new curriculum was and still is the contact with patients right from the first year. He was also the coordinator for student patient contacts at the start of the new curriculum. He was also very involved in several patient associations. In the academic year 2010- 2011, he was teacher of the year, elected by second-year medical students. 


Van Goor's research focused on various problems in gastrointestinal surgery, including postoperative pain and abnormal wound healing. For this, he received several national and international grants. He was specifically involved in research groups focusing on the improvement of surgical care. He has also (co-)authored 335 scientific articles and collaborated on several medical books.

Healthcare innovations

In addition, Van Goor was gripped by innovation in healthcare. As an institution, the Radboudumc wants to continue to develop, in better care, better research and better education. People like Professor Van Goor, who want to and dare to take steps with guts and courage, are needed for this.
Professor Van Goor can be seen as a driver of innovations and developments in healthcare, including the application of AI. How do you activate patients to move, make sure that a nurse can act on time without constantly bothering the patient with measurements and how do you protect patients from infections, for example. Van Goor was constantly looking for answers to these and solutions to them. The patient's well-being was important to Van Goor, bearing in mind that the best place for a patient is actually their own environment. That is what he wanted to contribute to. And that often involved technology. This was not limited to the Radboudumc.

He is the originator of R4heal, which focuses on patient needs. It provides a smart, interactive healing environment with images, games, sounds and smells to make post-surgery care as pleasant as possible. As a result, the patient experiences less pain and stress and sleeps and moves better. As a result, the patient feels better and can go home sooner. The initiative came about in cooperation with external parties with the help of a grant from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

Driven by useful innovations in healthcare, he and internist Bas Bredie developed the continuous monitoring of patients. This allows nurses to remotely monitor the patient's vital data via a smart box on the patient's wrist. The box lets them know in time if anything changes in the patient's condition. This allows the nurse to treat well in time. During the covid period, these lockers proved very valuable in care.

The Board of Directors and colleagues of the Radboudumc congratulate Professor Harry van Goor on his appointment as Knight of the Order of the Dutch Lion.

More information

Margie Alders



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