Developing a plan for the implementation and evaluation of a provincial surveillance project: application of the quality implementation framework (QIF)
By andrea chaplin
I am an evaluation specialist working for an intermediary organization called Public Health Ontario. I support teams evaluate their initiatives and support them gather information they need to plan for the implementation of these initiatives. At Public Health Ontario we provide scientific evidence and expert guidance on public health across the province. Our projects include gathering and summarizing evidence, implementing evidence-based programs and practices, data collection to inform decision making, and research. This example focuses on data collection to inform decision making.
A group of hospitals in Ontario have been sharing data on antibiotic resistant organisms for the purposes of surveillance and benchmarking with support from the Infection Prevention and Control department. There is the potential to expand this data sharing arrangement to establish a model for voluntary provincial surveillance. This year, our stakeholders are being asked to follow a revised protocol and reporting process. Consistency in what data is collected and how it is reported is critical for the success of this initiative.
To support this team think about the significance of changes for stakeholders, what supports they could provide this fiscal year, and how they could conduct a process evaluation, I used the Quality Implementation Framework (Meyers, 2012).
The Quality Implementation Framework outlines practical questions that can help teams plan for implementation organized under four phases:
1) initial considerations regarding the host setting,
2) creating a structure for implementation,
3) ongoing structure once implementation begins, and
4) improving future applications.
Before reviewing the questions with the team, the first step was to get them to list what’s being implemented or what are the specific things stakeholders need to be doing to follow the new surveillance protocol and reporting process.
I adapted the recommended questions from the Quality Implementation Framework to incorporate language that would be familiar with the project team. By completing the questions as a group, we established a better understanding of what we already know about our stakeholders and what we need to learn more about in our evaluation. Going through the questions also prompted the team to consider what types of supports we could provide this fiscal year, including an action plan to strengthen buy-in for the initiative. This exercise informed the development of a written implementation plan.
Success in obtaining buy-in for the use of published implementation process models or frameworks seems to be supported by demonstrating how it is helping us better respond to the needs of our stakeholders, and at the same time, providing a clear road map for application.