The IIRNPC members met in March 2014 at the 2nd International Primary Health Care Reform Conference in Brisbane, Australia to address three goals:
- To seek expert’s experiences of issues associated with undertaking implementation research
- To build new (virtual) teams to share implementation research and ideas
- To consult on how participants would like to see the network work and its value to them
To achieve this, topic experts facilitated debate across key areas of:
- The Researcher – Policy Interface
- Consumer Engagement
- Getting to scale
- Working with practice based research networks (PBRNs)
- Partners in Research
- Knowledge Exchange and Transfer
The debates were wide and ranging but offered up consensus on key points including:
- Consumers and non-research stakeholders including health service providers, policymakers and educators must be engaged in implementation research projects from their inception.
- Stakeholders have different opportunities and challenges within their own sectors. Researchers and stakeholders have to work together to improve their own and each other’s understanding of these opportunities and challenges.
- Unexpected research results, or rejection of a hypothesis, can be valuable learning opportunities. Information from ‘negative trials’ must be shared.
- ‘Implementation salvage’ is a key part of implementation research. Researchers and stakeholders must continually review and shape the research project to gain maximum benefit from the research.
- The use of implementation research allows us to look at both scaling up and, importantly, scaling down the implementation of findings dependent upon their impacts and value.
- Engagement with consumers from the onset and throughout the research process should ensure that ‘real life’ issues and relevance to ‘real life application’ is captured.
- Policymakers and service providers must have access to existing knowledge so that research content isn’t reinvented.
The IIRNPC members concurred that an implementation research network is of great value to them. They agreed that systems to enable information and knowledge exchange should be further developed as proposed in the recent consultation paper ‘An introduction to the International Implementation Research Network in Primary Care’.
Comments on this paper are welcomed until July 2014 to:
Associate Professor Terry Findlay Head of Programs: firstname.lastname@example.org
Professor Chris van Weel Professor of Primary Health Care Research: email@example.com
Emma Whitehead Research Implementation Coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org