The development of a framework to integrate evidence into a national injury prevention strategy

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Abstract

Background

Injury is the leading cause of death from birth to age 34 in Canada (Statistics Canada, 2008). In 2013, a national injury prevention organization in Canada initiated a research-practitioner collaboration to establish a framework for incorporating evidence in the organization's decision-making. In this study, we outline the development process and provide an overview of the framework.

Methods

The process of development of the evidence-synthesis framework included consultation with national and international injury prevention experts, a review of the research literature to identify existing models for incorporating research evidence into public health practice and extensive interactions with the organization's leadership and staff.

Results

A framework emphasizing four types of research evidence was recommended: (i) epidemiologic evidence describing the burden and cause of injury, (ii) evidence concerning the effectiveness of interventions, (iii) evidence on effective methods for implementing promising interventions at a population level, and (iv) evidence and theory from the behavioral sciences. Through the evidence-synthesis process the framework prioritizes highly synthesized evidence-based strategies and draws attention to important research gaps.

Conclusions

This study describes a novel opportunity to operationalize an organization's commitment to integrate evidence into practice. The framework provides guidance on how to use evidence strategically to maximize the potential impact of prevention efforts. Opportunities for further evaluation and dissemination are discussed.

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