Methods to Succeed in Effective Knowledge Translation in Clinical Practice

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Abstract

Purpose:

To explore the evidence around facilitation as an intervention for the successful implementation of new knowledge into clinical practice.

Organizing Construct:

The revised version of the Promoting Action on Research Implementation in Health Services (PARIHS) framework, called the integrated or i-PARIHS framework, is used as the explanatory framework. This framework posits that evidence is a multidimensional construct embedded within innovation and operationalized by clinicians (individuals and within teams), working across multiple layers of context. Facilitation is the active ingredient that promotes successful implementation.

Findings:

An emerging body of evidence supports facilitation as a mechanism to getting new knowledge into clinical practice. Facilitation roles are divided into beginner, experienced, and expert facilitators. Facilitators can be internal or external to the organization they work in, and their skills and attributes complement other knowledge translation (KT) roles. Complex KT projects require facilitators who are experienced in implementation methods.

Conclusions:

Facilitation is positioned as the active ingredient to effectively introduce new knowledge into a clinical setting. Levels of facilitation experience are assessed in relation to the complexity of the KT task. Three core facilitation roles are identified, and structured interventions are established taking into account the nature and novelty of the evidence, the receptiveness of the clinicians, and the context or setting where the new evidence is to be introduced.

Clinical Relevance:

Roles such as novice, experienced, and expert facilitators have important and complementary parts to play in enabling the successful translation of evidence into everyday practice in order to provide effective care for patients.

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