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1.  Strategies to facilitate implementation and sustainability of large system transformations: a case study of a national program for improving quality of care for elderly people 
Large-scale change initiatives stimulating change in several organizational systems in the health and social care sector are challenging both to lead and evaluate. There is a lack of systematic research that can enrich our understanding of strategies to facilitate large system transformations in this sector. The purpose of this study was to examine the characteristics of core activities and strategies to facilitate implementation and change of a national program aimed at improving life for the most ill elderly people in Sweden. The program outcomes were also addressed to assess the impact of these strategies.
A longitudinal case study design with multiple data collection methods was applied. Archival data (n = 795), interviews with key stakeholders (n = 11) and non-participant observations (n = 23) were analysed using content analysis. Outcome data was obtained from national quality registries.
This study presents an approach for implementing a large national change program that is characterized by initial flexibility and dynamism regarding content and facilitation strategies and a growing complexity over time requiring more structure and coordination. The description of activities and strategies show that the program management team engaged a variety of stakeholders and actor groups and accordingly used a palate of different strategies. The main strategies used to influence change in the target organisations were to use regional improvement coaches, regional strategic management teams, national quality registries, financial incentives and annually revised agreements. Interactive learning sessions, intense communication, monitor and measurements, and active involvement of different experts and stakeholders, including elderly people, complemented these strategies. Program outcomes showed steady progress in most of the five target areas, less so for the target of achieving coordinated care.
There is no blue-print on how to approach the challenging task of leading large scale change programs in complex contexts, but our conclusion is that more attention has to be given to the multidimensional strategies that program management need to consider. This multidimensionality comprises different strategies depending on types of actors, system levels, contextual factors, program progress over time, program content, types of learning and change processes, and the conditions for sustainability.
PMCID: PMC4177071  PMID: 25230774
4.  Functions of behavior change interventions when implementing multi-professional teamwork at an emergency department: a comparative case study 
While there is strong support for the benefits of working in multi-professional teams in health care, the implementation of multi-professional teamwork is reported to be complex and challenging. Implementation strategies combining multiple behavior change interventions are recommended, but the understanding of how and why the behavior change interventions influence staff behavior is limited. There is a lack of studies focusing on the functions of different behavior change interventions and the mechanisms driving behavior change. In this study, applied behavior analysis is used to analyze the function and impact of different behavior change interventions when implementing multi-professional teamwork.
A comparative case study design was applied. Two sections of an emergency department implemented multi-professional teamwork involving changes in work processes, aimed at increasing inter-professional collaboration. Behavior change interventions and staff behavior change were studied using observations, interviews and document analysis. Using a hybrid thematic analysis, the behavior change interventions were categorized according to the DCOM® model. The functions of the behavior change interventions were then analyzed using applied behavior analysis.
The two sections used different behavior change interventions, resulting in a large difference in the degree of staff behavior change. The successful section enabled staff performance of teamwork behaviors with a strategy based on ongoing problem-solving and frequent clarification of directions. Managerial feedback initially played an important role in motivating teamwork behaviors. Gradually, as staff started to experience positive outcomes of the intervention, motivation for teamwork behaviors was replaced by positive task-generated feedback.
The functional perspective of applied behavior analysis offers insight into the behavioral mechanisms that describe how and why behavior change interventions influence staff behavior. The analysis demonstrates how enabling behavior change interventions, managerial feedback and task-related feedback interact in their influence on behavior and have complementary functions during different stages of implementation.
PMCID: PMC4050988  PMID: 24885212
Implementation; Adherence; Fidelity; Operant psychology; DCOM®; Organizational behavior management; Applied behavior analysis; Motivation
5.  Fidelity and moderating factors in complex interventions: a case study of a continuum of care program for frail elderly people in health and social care 
Prior studies measuring fidelity of complex interventions have mainly evaluated adherence, and not taken factors affecting adherence into consideration. A need for studies that clarify the concept of fidelity and the function of factors moderating fidelity has been emphasized. The aim of the study was to systematically evaluate implementation fidelity and possible factors influencing fidelity of a complex care continuum intervention for frail elderly people.
The intervention was a systematization of the collaboration between a nurse with geriatric expertise situated at the emergency department, the hospital ward staff, and a multi-professional team with a case manager in the municipal care services for older people. Implementation was evaluated between September 2008 and May 2010 with observations of work practices, stakeholder interviews, and document analysis according to a modified version of The Conceptual Framework for Implementation Fidelity.
A total of 16 of the 18 intervention components were to a great extent delivered as planned, while some new components were added to the model. No changes in the frequency or duration of the 18 components were observed, but the dose of the added components varied over time. Changes in fidelity were caused in a complex, interrelated fashion by all the moderating factors in the framework, i.e., context, staff and participant responsiveness, facilitation, recruitment, and complexity.
The Conceptual Framework for Implementation Fidelity was empirically useful and included comprehensive measures of factors affecting fidelity. Future studies should focus on developing the framework with regard to how to investigate relationships between the moderating factors and fidelity over time.
Trial registration, NCT01260493.
PMCID: PMC3342887  PMID: 22436121
Adherence; Adaptation; Process evaluation; Complex intervention; Implementation; Care chain; Elderly
6.  Implementing a continuum of care model for older people—results from a Swedish case study 
There is a need for integrated care and smooth collaboration between care-providing organisations and professions to create a continuum of care for frail older people. However, collaboration between organisations and professions is often problematic. The aim of this study was to examine the process of implementing a new continuum of care model in a complex organisational context, and illuminate some of the challenges involved. The introduced model strived to connect three organisations responsible for delivering health and social care to older people: the regional hospital, primary health care and municipal eldercare.
The actions of the actors involved in the process of implementing the model were understood to be shaped by the actors' understanding, commitment and ability. This article is based on 44 qualitative interviews performed on four occasions with 26 key actors at three organisational levels within these three organisations.
Results and conclusions
The results point to the importance of paying regard to the different cultures of the organisations when implementing a new model. The role of upper management emerged as very important. Furthermore, to be accepted, the model has to be experienced as effectively dealing with real problems in the everyday practice of the actors in the organisations, from the bottom to the top.
PMCID: PMC3225243  PMID: 22128279
older people; continuum of care; integrated care; implementation; qualitative methods; Sweden
7.  Design of a randomized controlled study of a multi-professional and multidimensional intervention targeting frail elderly people 
BMC Geriatrics  2011;11:24.
Frail elderly people need an integrated and coordinated care. The two-armed study "Continuum of care for frail elderly people" is a multi-professional and multidimensional intervention for frail community-dwelling elderly people. It was designed to evaluate whether the intervention programme for frail elderly people can reduce the number of visits to hospital, increase satisfaction with health and social care and maintain functional abilities. The implementation process is explored and analysed along with the intervention. In this paper we present the study design, the intervention and the outcome measures as well as the baseline characteristics of the study participants.
The study is a randomised two-armed controlled trial with follow ups at 3, 6 and 12 months. The study group includes elderly people who sought care at the emergency ward and discharged to their own homes in the community. Inclusion criteria were 80 years and older or 65 to 79 years with at least one chronic disease and dependent in at least one activity of daily living. Exclusion criteria were acute severely illness with an immediate need of the assessment and treatment by a physician, severe cognitive impairment and palliative care. The intention was that the study group should comprise a representative sample of frail elderly people at a high risk of future health care consumption. The intervention includes an early geriatric assessment, early family support, a case manager in the community with a multi-professional team and the involvement of the elderly people and their relatives in the planning process.
The design of the study, the randomisation procedure and the protocol meetings were intended to ensure the quality of the study. The implementation of the intervention programme is followed and analysed throughout the whole study, which enables us to generate knowledge on the process of implementing complex interventions. The intervention contributes to early recognition of both the elderly peoples' needs of information, care and rehabilitation and of informal caregivers' need of support and information. This study is expected to show positive effects on frail elderly peoples' health care consumption, functional abilities and satisfaction with health and social care.
Trial registration NCT01260493
PMCID: PMC3118103  PMID: 21569570
8.  Systematic evaluation of implementation fidelity of complex interventions in health and social care 
Evaluation of an implementation process and its fidelity can give insight into the 'black box' of interventions. However, a lack of standardized methods for studying fidelity and implementation process have been reported, which might be one reason for the fact that few prior studies in the field of health service research have systematically evaluated interventions' implementation processes.
The aim of this project is to systematically evaluate implementation fidelity and possible factors influencing fidelity of complex interventions in health and social care.
A modified version of The Conceptual Framework for Implementation Fidelity will be used as a conceptual model for the evaluation. The modification implies two additional moderating factors: context and recruitment. A systematic evaluation process was developed. Multiple case study method is used to investigate implementation of three complex health service interventions. Each case will be investigated in depth and longitudinally, using both quantitative and qualitative methods.
This study is the first attempt to empirically test The Conceptual Framework for Implementation Fidelity. The study can highlight mechanism and factors of importance when implementing complex interventions. Especially the role of the moderating factors on implementation fidelity can be clarified.
Trial Registration
Supported Employment, SE, among people with severe mental illness -- a randomized controlled trial: NCT00960024.
PMCID: PMC2942793  PMID: 20815872

Results 1-8 (8)