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Schizophr Bull. 2003;29(1):125-31.

Implementation of evidence-based practices in state mental health systems: implications for research and effectiveness studies.

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  • 1Center for Mental Health Quality and Accountability, NASMHPD Research Institute, Inc., 66 Canal Center Plaza, Suite 302, Alexandria, VA 22314, USA.


There is a huge gap between knowledge and practice, and between what is known through research and what is actually implemented in public mental health systems. In the past 2 decades, rigorous research has demonstrated the effectiveness of various treatments and interventions but these findings have not resulted in broad-based implementation. A major contention of this article is that while there is a growing body of knowledge related to evidence-based practices, there is a lack of understanding and research related to factors critical for implementation. This article reviews the current status of implementation of evidence-based practices in the public mental health system and identifies challenges and barriers related to their dissemination. Based on this analysis, this article proposes a research agenda that promotes the development of a science of implementation of evidence-based practices.

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