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VA Health Systems Research

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QUERI Implementation Research Group

Clarity out of Chaos: Use of theory in implementation research

by Laura Damschroder, MPH
Seminar date: 11/18/2020

Description: Implementation science has been recognized as a potential catalyst for health system reform, in part, because of its contribution of well-grounded theories including conceptual frameworks. This science focuses on developing and testing methods to broadly spread successful sustained implementations across diverse settings by overcoming the chasm between evidence-based scientific discoveries and the patients who need them. However, surveys of organizational leaders reveal that most attempts to implement innovations targeted at improvements within organizations fail and interventions take much too long to get integrated into routine clinical practice to benefit patients. An overview of the types and roles of theory in advancing implementation science will be offered in this seminar. Resources for selecting appropriate frameworks will be described along with illustrative examples. The case is made that well-developed theory is what enables knowledge to emerge out of seeming chaos and for translation of that knowledge to be widely and reliably implemented into routine practice so that health and well-being of patients is maximized by delivery of interventions that are rooted in that knowledge.

DOWNLOAD: PDF handout | Audio only (mp3) | transcript not yet available

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