Prioritizing Evidence-based Interventions for Dissemination and Implementation Investments: AHRQ’s Model and Experience

Oct 01, 2019 | Huppert

BACKGROUND: The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) is mandated to implement patient-centered outcomes research (PCOR) to promote safer, higher quality care. With this goal, we developed a process to identify which evidence-based PCOR interventions merit investment in implementation. We present our process and experience to date.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: AHRQ developed and applied a systematic, transparent, and stakeholder-driven process to identify, evaluate, and prioritize PCOR interventions for broad dissemination and implementation. AHRQ encouraged public nominations, and assessed them against criteria for quality of evidence, potential impact, and feasibility of successful implementation. Nominations with sufficient evidence, impact, and feasibility were considered for funding.

RESULTS: Between June 2016 and June 2018, AHRQ received 35 nominations from researchers, nonprofit corporations, and federal agencies. Topics covered diverse settings, populations, and clinical areas. Twenty-eight unique PCOR interventions met minimum criteria; 16 of those had moderate to high evidence/impact and were assessed for feasibility. Fourteen topics either duplicated other efforts or lacked evidence on implementation feasibility. Two topics were prioritized for funding (cardiac rehabilitation after myocardial infarction and screening/treatment for unhealthy alcohol use).

CONCLUSIONS: AHRQ developed replicable criteria, and a transparent and stakeholder-driven framework that attracted a diverse array of nominations. We identified 2 evidence-based practice interventions to improve care with sufficient evidence, impact, and feasibility to justify an AHRQ investment to scale up practice. Other funders, health systems or institutions could use or modify this process to guide prioritization for implementation.

PubMed Abstract

Huppert, J. S., Fournier, A. K., Bihm, J. L., Chang, C. S., Miller, T. L., Nourjah, P., . . . Bierman, A. S. (2019). Prioritizing Evidence-based Interventions for Dissemination and Implementation Investments: AHRQ's Model and Experience. Med Care, 57 Suppl 10 Suppl 3, S272-s277. doi:10.1097/mlr.0000000000001176