KT Knowledge Transfer

Collection of articles on KT is available here.

Measuring Implementation Strategy Fidelity in HealthyHearts NYC: A Complex Intervention Using Practice Facilitation in Primary Care.
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Berry CA, Nguyen AM, Cuthel AM, Cleland CM, Siman N, Pham-Singer H, et al.
American journal of medical quality : the official journal of the American College of Medical Quality. 2021;36(4):270–6.
Few studies have assessed the fidelity of practice facilitation (PF) as an implementation strategy, and none have used an a priori definition or conceptual framework of fidelity to guide fidelity assessment. The authors adapted the Conceptual Framework for Implementation Fidelity to guide fidelity assessment in HealthyHearts NYC, an intervention that used PF to improve adoption of cardiovascular disease evidence-based guidelines in primary care practices. Data from a web-based tracking system of 257 practices measured fidelity using 4 categories: frequency, duration, content, and coverage. Almost all (94.2%) practices received at least the required 13 PF visits. Facilitators spent on average 26.3 hours at each site. Most practices (95.7%) completed all Task List items, and 71.2% were educated on all Chronic Care Model strategies. The majority (65.8%) received full coverage. This study provides a model that practice managers and implementers can use to evaluate fidelity of PF, and potentially other implementation strategies.

Critical factors that affect the functioning of a research and evaluation capacity building partnership: A causal loop diagram.
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Tobin R, Crawford G, Hallett J, Maycock BR, Lobo R.
PloS one. 2022;17(1):e0262125.
INTRODUCTION: Public health policy and practice is strengthened by the application of quality evidence to decision making. However, there is limited understanding of how initiatives that support the generation and use of evidence in public health are operationalised. This study examines factors that support the internal functioning of a partnership, the Western Australian Sexual Health and Blood-borne Virus Applied Research and Evaluation Network (SiREN). SiREN aims to build research and evaluation capacity and increase evidence-informed decision making in a public health context. METHODS: This study was informed by systems concepts. It developed a causal loop diagram, a type of qualitative system model that illustrated the factors that influence the internal operation of SiREN. The causal loop diagram was developed through an iterative and participatory process with SiREN staff and management (n = 9) via in-depth semi-structured interviews (n = 4), workshops (n = 2), and meetings (n = 6). RESULTS: Findings identified critical factors that affected the functioning of SiREN. Central to SiREN’s ability to meet its aims was its capacity to adapt within a dynamic system. Adaptation was facilitated by the flow of knowledge between SiREN and system stakeholders and the expertise of the team. SiREN demonstrated credibility and capability, supporting development of new, and strengthening existing, partnerships. This improved SiREN’s ability to be awarded new funding and enhanced its sustainability and growth. SiREN actively balanced divergent stakeholder interests to increase sustainability. CONCLUSION: The collaborative development of the diagram facilitated a shared understanding of SiREN. Adaptability was central to SiREN achieving its aims. Monitoring the ability of public health programs to adapt to the needs of the systems in which they work is important to evaluate effectiveness. The detailed analysis of the structure of SiREN and how this affects its operation provide practical insights for those interested in establishing a similar project.

Rates of sustainment in the Universal Stages of Implementation Completion.
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Wong DR, Schaper H, Saldana L.
Implementation science communications. 2022 Jan;3(1):2.
BACKGROUND: Sustainment is a desirable outcome of implementation, but its precise definition remains unclear, contributing to the difficulty of identifying a generalized rate of sustainment. Several studies and reviews on the topic differ on both definition and levels of analysis. Furthermore, methodological limitations might have influenced the results, including the unknown quality with which some interventions were delivered. The Universal Stages of Implementation Completion (UniSIC) is a standardized measurement tool that tracks the implementation process and milestone completion across a wide range of real-world implementations-this provides a unique opportunity to identify a generalized rate of sustainment. METHODS: UniSIC data was captured from the SIC website on 27 September 2020 and included data from all sites (n = 1778) that had been tracked to date. Data were restricted to sites that achieved competency in program delivery, and thus had a newly adopted program worthy of sustainment. Dates and indicator variables of implementation activities were combined to form two alternate definitions of sustainment: sustained (start-up) was achieved if sites continued to deliver services 2 years past their program start-up date; sustained (competent) was achieved if sites continued to deliver services 2 years past their competence and/or certification date. Of sites eligible for inclusion based on these definitions (N = 208), descriptive analyses were conducted to determine a rate of sustainment for all programs that successfully started a program. These definitions were also applied to a combined sample for a general rate of sustainment among all sites. Rates of competency among both a sample of sites that started up and a combined sample were also identified. RESULTS: The rate of competence was 58.5% and the rate of sustained (start-up) was 37.1%, while the rate of sustained (competent) was 25.1%. The rates of competence and sustainment among the combined samples were far lower: 15.6% for competence, 6.8% for sustained (start-up), and 4.4% for sustained (competent). CONCLUSIONS: These identified rates of sustainment are accurate initial estimates of sustainment of community-based practices, or in general. Future research on rates of sustainment should carefully define measures of sustainment and be transparent about the real-world conditions on which analyses are centered.