Under the theme, 'Beyond trials: the rise of pragmatic approaches to implementation science in health and social care researchthe conference showcased implementation research that has supported the effective implementation of evidence-based health and social care research within services and systems to improve health and care outcomes.

The conference featured four plenary lectures from a panel of leading international researchers and practitioners, 41 oral and poster presentations, nine meet-the-experts sessions, panel discussions, and question & answer sessions.

Delegates came from 13 countries, including Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Ethiopia, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, South Africa, Switzerland, UK and USA, and included applied researchers, health and social care professionals, policymakers, and service user researchers.

The four plenary lectures explored the relationship between research and policy, patient involvement and communications, telemental health during Covid-19, and how to deliver health and care interventions in practice. The four plenaries were delivered by:

  • Paul Cairney, professor of politics and public policy, University of Stirling, UK, who discussed ‘Why policymakers do not listen to your evidence, and is it their fault?’
  • Vanessa Carter, an antimicrobial resistance and One Health advocate, South Africa, who explored valuing patient engagement to implement meaningful interventions for antimicrobial resistance
  • Samantha Connolly, an investigator at the Center for Healthcare Organization and Implementation Research and a practicing clinical psychologist at the US Department of Veterans Affairs Boston Healthcare System and Donald M. Hilty, professor of psychiatry, UC Davis School of Medicine, USA, who together discussed critical components of telemental health implementation during the Covid-19 pandemic from patient, clinician, and system perspectives
  • Jill Francis, professor of implementation science, School of Health Sciences, University of Melbourne, Australia, who discussed ‘Implementation in the wild: three levers to support practice change’.  

Across the conference, there were 41 oral and poster presentations, covering pragmatic approaches to implementation science in a variety of health and social care contexts, including mental health, global health, palliative care, children’s health, maternity care, diabetes self-management and care homes. The abstracts presented will be published by BMC in a special supplement of Implementation Science.

There were also opportunities for delegates to meet in smaller groups with leading implementation science experts to discuss everything from hybrid research designs, evaluating complex interventions to understanding the role of trust, power and equity in implementation.

We wanted to bring people together from around the world to discuss innovative ways of using implementation science to support practical changes in health and social care services, and in a variety of contexts, and the conference has definitely achieved that. There has been so much to take in over the two days, and many fascinating presentations and discussions, which I hope people can continue, especially through their new connections

Professor Nick Sevdalis, co-chair of the conference’s scientific committee

At the close of the conference, there were four prizes awarded for the best oral and poster presentations, in association with Frontiers in Health Services. They were: 

  • Best oral presentation runner up: Alexandra Ridout (@AERidout) for ‘Evaluating the national scale-up of the CRADLE Vital Sign Alert device in Sierra Leone. Helping pregnant women get to the right place at the right time’ (watch the video)
  • Best oral presentation winner: Caitlin Wilson (@999_Caitlin) for ‘Developing an initial programme theory of prehospital feedback in an ambulance service setting: A mixed-methods study’ (watch the video)
  • Best poster runner up: Cristina Fernandez Turienzo (@Cristurienzo) for ‘Young Lives: Mentoring scheme for pregnant adolescent girls in Sierra Leone’ (watch the video)
  • Best poster winner: Kelechi Udoh (@KelechiUdoh) for ‘Limiting and facilitating contextual factors impacting efforts to address gender norms underpinning female child marriage in Nigeria and Bangladesh’ (watch the video).

The conference was organised by the Centre for Implementation Science at King’s College London and was supported by the UK Implementation SocietyKing’s Health Partners, and the journal Frontiers in Health Services

Implementation Science Masterclass 2022

The Conference formed part of a programme of online events on implementation science organised by the Centre for Implementation Science at King’s College London in 2022.  

In June 2022, the Implementation Science Masterclass 2022 – now in its eighth year – was held over four days attracting 81 delegates from 10 countries. It included lectures from world-renowned experts, small group workshops, and advice clinics to help health and social care professionals, researchers, patients and service users to work more effectively on their own implementation projects.

New online module in implementation science

NIHR ARC South London has launched a new short course for health and social care practitioners, policymakers and researchers interested in learning more about implementation science. The module runs for six weeks and starts in October 2023. Find out more