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New York, NY, USA: Academy Health/Milbank Memorial Fund.
Academy Health/Milbank Memorial Fund, New York, NY, USA
As the move toward an evidence-based approach to health care has gathered momentum over the past two decades, increased attention has been paid to strategies that try to ensure that knowledge gained from the best evidence is actually used in practice. This move to enhance the utility of research involves both making research evidence more usable and improving the capacity of management, policy, and clinical decision makers to use it. Using evidence to improve health services has been the focus of a series of five international conferences held over the past decade, the most recent one in Washington, D.C., in September 2003.
Drawing on presentations at that conference, this report presents nine short case studies from around the world, where very different sorts of research evidence are being used in very different policy and practice settings. The purpose of these case studies is not to identify “proven” translation strategies but to offer insights into the ways different people are trying to better use scientific research to improve human health.
Several common themes arise from the insights offered. Communication between those who produce and those who use research is critical, though close relationships between researchers and decision makers raise questions about the blurring of roles and potential impacts on scientific autonomy. Integration of research, research utilization, and routine practice is a key goal within health care organizations and systems, though rarely achieved. Evaluation of efforts to better use evidence is crucial yet often poorly done, reducing confidence that human health is actually being improved.
Bangladesh, Canada, Chile, England and Wales, Russia, South Africa, Thailand, United States, US, USA, World Health Organization, Health Evidence Network
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