Implementation Science

Gaps between research and practice occur in every setting and disease group. Getting evidence-based practice into routine clinical care is challenging. Sometimes this is referred to as the “know-do gap” – what is known and what is done is often different. The reasons for this gap can be complex and range from individual to system-level barriers

Implementation science is a field of research defined as the scientific study of methods and strategies that facilitate the equitable uptake of research findings and other evidence-based practice into regular use and so improve the quality and effectiveness of health services. This field also includes de-implementation – the identification and removal of an approach, practice, or programme that no longer meets patients’ needs. 

Implementation science provides a structured approach to identify and unpick some of the challenges to implementation or de-implementation. This step is essential to make sure solutions are generated that reflect the needs of patients.  This data can be used to generate theory-informed implementation strategies and guide their use. Finally, it can inform the evaluation of the process of implementation.

An Introduction to Implementation Science from Associate  Professor Stephanie Best

What do you need to do? 

The implementation science team at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VCCC Alliance and University of Melbourne have created the Implementation Science Collaboration Form to help you determine your implementation needs. You may need to gather some information before you can complete the form. 

Staff at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and VCCC Alliance will then use this form to identify what support you may require for your implementation research. 

We are interested in your feedback on the form, so you will be asked if we can use your de-identified data for analysis (Ethics approval numbers: Peter MacCallum 22/92L, VCCC 87647 and University of Melbourne 24474). 

What happens next? 

You may find that as you start completing the form you do not have all the information you need to complete it. This is fine! It is good to take some time at this early stage to make sure the implementation objectives of the project are clear, you have engaged all the key stakeholders and have gathered appropriate evidence. 

Once the form is submitted, the implementation science team will review it and respond to you within a few weeks. The team will either: 

  • Suggest areas where further data or clarification is required 

  • Direct you to additional resources 

  • Indicate your project is not an implementation research project 

For some people, it may be helpful to attend an implementation science clinic. This will only be available after the Implementation Science Collaboration Form has been completed. The clinics will run with an appointment system, occur monthly and provide 10-minute advice sessions. 

Complete the form to see how your research could benefit from an implementation science lens. We are looking forward to hearing about your research plans.

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