Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://hdl.handle.net/2440/116878
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Type: Journal article
Title: Clinical interventions, implementation interventions, and the potential greyness in between - a discussion paper
Author: Eldh, A.
Almost, J.
Decorby-Watson, K.
Gifford, W.
Harvey, G.
Hasson, H.
Kenny, D.
Moodie, S.
Wallin, L.
Yost, J.
Citation: BMC Health Services Research, 2017; 17(1):1-10
Publisher: BioMed Central
Issue Date: 2017
ISSN: 1472-6963
1472-6963
Statement of
Responsibility: 
Ann Catrine Eldh, Joan Almost, Kara DeCorby-Watson, Wendy Gifford, Gill Harvey, Henna Hasson, Deborah Kenny, Sheila Moodie, Lars Wallin and Jennifer Yost
Abstract: Background: There is increasing awareness that regardless of the proven value of clinical interventions, the use of effective strategies to implement such interventions into clinical practice is necessary to ensure that patients receive the benefits. However, there is often confusion between what is the clinical intervention and what is the implementation intervention. This may be caused by a lack of conceptual clarity between ‘intervention’ and ‘implementation’, yet at other times by ambiguity in application. We suggest that both the scientific and the clinical communities would benefit from greater clarity; therefore, in this paper, we address the concepts of intervention and implementation, primarily as in clinical interventions and implementation interventions, and explore the grey area in between. Discussion: To begin, we consider the similarities, differences and potential greyness between clinical interventions and implementation interventions through an overview of concepts. This is illustrated with reference to two examples of clinical interventions and implementation intervention studies, including the potential ambiguity in between. We then discuss strategies to explore the hybridity of clinical-implementation intervention studies, including the role of theories, frameworks, models, and reporting guidelines that can be applied to help clarify the clinical and implementation intervention, respectively. Conclusion: Semantics provide opportunities for improved precision in depicting what is ‘intervention’ and what is ‘implementation’ in health care research. Further, attention to study design, the use of theory, and adoption of reporting guidelines can assist in distinguishing between the clinical intervention and the implementation intervention. However, certain aspects may remain unclear in analyses of hybrid studies of clinical and implementation interventions. Recognizing this potential greyness can inform further discourse.
Keywords: Concept; implementation; implementation science; intervention; knowledge translation
Rights: © The Author(s). 2017 Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
DOI: 10.1186/s12913-016-1958-5
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