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The struggle of translating science into action: Foundational concepts of implementation science


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Rapport, F, Clay-Williams, R, Churruca, K, Shih, P, Hogden, A ORCID: 0000-0002-4317-7960 and Braithwaite, J 2017 , 'The struggle of translating science into action: Foundational concepts of implementation science' , Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice, vol. 24, no. 1 , pp. 117-126 , doi: 10.1111/jep.12741.

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Rationale, aims, and objectives: “Implementation science,” the scientific study of methodstranslating research findings into practical, useful outcomes, is contested and complex, withunpredictable use of results from routine clinical practice and different levels of continuingassessment of implementable interventions. The authors aim to reveal how implementationscience is presented and understood in health services research contexts and clarify thefoundational concepts: diffusion, dissemination, implementation, adoption, and sustainability, to progress knowledge in the field.Method: Implementation science models, theories, and frameworks are critiqued, and theirvalue for laying the groundwork from which to implement a study’s findings is emphasised. Thepaper highlights the challenges of turning research findings into practical outcomes that can besuccessfully implemented and the need for support from change agents, to ensure improvementsto health care provision, health systems, and policy. The paper examines how researchers createimplementation plans and what needs to be considered for study outputs to lead to sustainableinterventions. This aspect needs clear planning, underpinned by appropriate theoretical paradigms that rigorously respond to a study’s aims and objectives.Conclusion: Researchers might benefit from a return to first principles in implementationscience, whereby applications that result from research endeavours are both effective and readilydisseminated and where interventions can be supported by appropriate health care personnel.These should be people specifically identified to promote change in service organisation, delivery,and policy that can be systematically evaluated over time, to ensure high‐quality, long‐termimprovements to patients’ health.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Rapport, F and Clay-Williams, R and Churruca, K and Shih, P and Hogden, A and Braithwaite, J
Keywords: evidence‐based health care and policy, health services research, implementable research findings, implementation science
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice
Publisher: Blackwell Publishing Ltd
ISSN: 1356-1294
DOI / ID Number: 10.1111/jep.12741
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2017 The Authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

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