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BMC Med Res Methodol. 2019 Jun 28;19(1):133. doi: 10.1186/s12874-019-0783-z.

Scoping implementation science for the beginner: locating yourself on the "subway line" of translational research.

Author information

1
Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, 19104, USA. laneme@pennmedicine.upenn.edu.
2
Penn Implementation Science Center at the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (PISCE@LDI), University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 19104, USA. laneme@pennmedicine.upenn.edu.
3
Penn Center for Perioperative Outcomes Research and Transformation, Philadelphia, PA, 19104, USA. laneme@pennmedicine.upenn.edu.
4
Departments of Pharmacy Practice and Psychiatry, Center for Implementation Research, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System, Little Rock, USA.
5
Penn Implementation Science Center at the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (PISCE@LDI), University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 19104, USA.
6
Department of Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, 3535 Market Street, 3rd floor, Philadelphia, PA, 19104, USA.
7
Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 19104, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Beginners to the discipline of implementation science often struggle to determine whether their research questions "count" as implementation science.

MAIN TEXT:

In this paper, three implementation scientists share a heuristic tool to help investigators determine where their research questions fall in the translational research continuum. They use a "subway model" that envisions a journey to implementation research with stops along the way at efficacy and effectiveness research.

CONCLUSIONS:

A series of structured questions about intervention efficacy, effectiveness, and implementation can help guide researchers to select research questions and appropriate study designs along the spectrum of translational research.

KEYWORDS:

Implementation science; Knowledge translation; Translational research

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