This artice is free to access.
At a time of significant upheaval in American health policy, maintaining a focus on a "North Star" is critical. For implementation science, this star is the knowledge base on how to optimally disseminate evidence related to health and health care, how to implement interventions to improve care within the many settings where people receive health care and make health-related decisions, and how to improve the health of the global population. To that end, the end of 2016 brought over 1100 engaged and activated "disciples of D & I" to Washington, DC for the 9 th Annual Conference on the Science of Dissemination and Implementation in Health. Once again, the accompanying abstracts in this issue demonstrate the breadth, depth and vigor of this continually expanding and evolving subset of health research. During three dynamic plenaries with rows and rows of filled seats and packed concurrent sessions presenters and attendees shared findings, raised methodologic and other challenges , and discussed future priorities, trends, and next steps for this community of research. For the third year in a row, we were buoyed by a strong partnership, co-led by AcademyHealth and the National Institutes of Health (NIH), with co-sponsorship from others committed to implementation science: the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), and the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The multidisciplinary program planning committee informed the development of the key themes for the conference, identified the plenary sessions topics and speakers, established track leads to manage the review process for concurrent panels, papers, and posters, and convened a scientific advisory panel to advise on the overall conference, thus ensuring a robust, inclusive, and rigorous process. Together, the opening keynote address and the three plenary panel sessions set a tone of innovation and dialogue, raised critical issues, surfaced different perspectives, and ensured that follow on lunch-time and hallway discussions delved deeper into thorny challenges facing the field. Roy Rosin, Chief Innovation Officer for the University of Pennsylvania's Perelman School of Medicine, introduced the audience to a range of methods for rapid testing, innovation in health-care delivery, and lessons learned from other industries to maximize potential of new practices to be scaled-up. Each of the three plenary panels presented a general discussion on a high priority challenge for dissemination and implementation (D & I) research. A panel on the balance between intervention and implementation fidelity and local adaptation touched on the very real dynamic that is playing out in communities across this country as policy and payment changes are driving providers and others to seek new ways to solve the challenges in their particular contexts. A panel on the longer-term decisions around sustainment or de-implementation of interventions could not be more timely given the "improvement fatigue" of some systems and providers and the very real limits on providers' time and focus. Too often, the imperative is to "do more"; much more attention needs to be about stopping what is not working, particularly in light of estimates that 30 percent of care provided is either unnecessary, of low value or wasteful (Institute of Medicine, 2013). The third plenary panel brought different perspectives on the enduring and evolving challenges in the dissemination of evidence and evidence-based practices as well as the opportunities emerging from innovations in the digital health sector. The plenary sessions were complemented by facilitated lunchtime discussions on these topics, as well as additional research priorities, which enabled more in-depth discussions, additional question and answer time, and brain-storming of future directions. Synopses of the lunchtime discussions are included in this supplement. The concurrent sessions were once again organized by tracks. Last year's tracks-Behavioral Health, Big Data and Technology for Health, and Models, Measures and Methods-were maintained, and a new track on Precision Medicine was added, built upon the significant interest that emerged from last year's plenary and subsequent discussions at NIH, National Academy of Medicine, and beyond. The tracks again enabled conference participants to follow a consistent theme across the multiple sessions of the conference and to better group thematically the individual papers and posters submitted by the conference participants. This supplement also is organized by these track themes. The call for abstracts, including individual paper presentations, individual posters and panel presentations, resulted in 601 submissions, spread across the nine thematic tracks. Over one hundred reviewers from multiple disciplines, sectors, settings and career stage devoted their time to ensuring a comprehensive and expert review, and reviews were conducted within each track and coordinated by the track leads. For the final program, 19 oral abstract sessions, 9 panels, and 334 posters were presented over the two-day meeting, in addition to a "poster slam". Slides for the oral presentations and panels (with the agreement of the authors) were posted on the conference website (https://academy-health.
Chambers, D., Simpson, L., Neta, G., Schwarz, U. von T., Percy-Laurry, A., … Kipnis, P. (2017). Proceedings from the 9th annual conference on the science of dissemination and implementation. Implementation Science, 12(S1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13012-017-0575-y