Implementation science is the study of methods and strategies to translate effective health care interventions into routine clinical practice. We look at what works, the people it works for, the circumstances it works in and how to scale up or adapt research for national roll-out.
Our implementation science group is co-led by Elizabeth Murray and Martin Marshall. Our work involves using Normalisation Process Theory to understand the dynamics of implementing, embedding, and integrating new technology or interventions.
We have successfully used implementation science in our HeLP-Diabetes project. HeLP-Diabetes is a web-based self-management programme for people with type 2 diabetes. It was shown to be effective and cost effective in an individually randomised controlled trial and in a parallel implementation study was shown to be highly acceptable to health care professionals and to patients.
As a result, we set up a not-for-profit social enterprise in the form of a community interest company called HeLP Digital, which gained contracts with seven Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) to deliver HeLP-Diabetes to their population. In 2018 NHS England licensed HeLP-Diabetes for national roll out. The NIHR have commissioned an independent evaluation of HeLP-Diabetes roll-out.
We developed this toolkit for healthcare managers, commissioners and others involved in planning how to implement a digital intervention into a local healthcare system.