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Overview | Mission, Vision, & Values | Flagship Programs | Investigators & Staff | Scientific Advisory Board | Community Advisory Board | HPRC Evaluation | Dissemination Research | Healthy Aging Research | Prevention Research

Dissemination Research

What Is Dissemination Research?

Many practices to promote healthy behaviors have been developed, tested, and proven to be effective. But the adoption and use of these practices has been slow.

Wider adoption and implementation of proven health-promotion practices depends on dissemination, which is the active spread of effective health-promoting behaviors, policies, and organizational practices.

Dissemination research examines how health promotion interventions can be effectively created, packaged, transmitted, and adopted.

Our dissemination research focuses on how to increase adoption and use of evidence-based health promotion practices in workplace and community organizations. Our research helps our partner organizations test and improve their dissemination of proven health-promoting programs.

Our Dissemination Research Framework

We have developed a practical framework to guide our collaborative work and our dissemination research.

HPRC dissemination framework

The main elements of our framework are: 1) a close partnership between researchers and a "disseminating organization" that takes ownership of the dissemination process; and 2) the use of social marketing principles to work closely with potential user organizations. The framework is based on existing literature on dissemination, including Greenhalgh's framework, Wandersman's Interactive Systems Framework, Damschroder's Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research, and Glasgow's RE-AIM, as well as our experience disseminating evidence-based practices.

The framework provides a conceptual model for designing and evaluating our dissemination research.

Dissemination at HPRC (pdf information sheet)

Selected Dissemination Research Activities

Evaluating Implementation of the American Cancer Society's HealthLinks in Small Worksites in Mason County, Washington, is an evaluation of dissemination of a package of evidence-based chronic disease prevention practices and educational events to small businesses in Mason County.

Fall Prevention Program Participation Study was a market analysis with a small group of older adults in the Puget Sound region to understand what promoted and hindered their enrolling in fall prevention programs recommended by their health-care providers.
R. Calhoun, H. Meischke, K. Hammerback et al., Older adults' perceptions of clinical fall prevention programs: a qualitative study, J Aging Res, 2011.

The Healthy Aging Dissemination Research Project is the centerpiece of HPRC's 2009-2014 five-year research plan. It involves conducting a series of two-year pilot studies in four focus areas: depression management, fall prevention, physical activity, and workplace health promotion. The studies will generate data and information we will use to develop larger research trials. Funding for the follow-on trials will come from a variety of public and private sources. In this way, the CDC-sponsored Healthy Aging Dissemination Research Project will be an incubator for generating new dissemination research and new research partners. Two pilot studies are being implemented:

  • National Dissemination of ACS Workplace Solutions to Mid-sized Companies in Low-Wage Industries
  • Coordinating Care for Falls via Emergency Responders

Marketing and Tailoring Hypertension Control via 911 Responders was a randomized controlled trial evaluating the effectiveness of a tailored, direct-mail approach to disseminating hypertension self-care information to high-risk adults in western Washington.

Marketing Workplace Chronic Disease Prevention was a randomized controlled trial evaluating dissemination of a package of evidence-based chronic disease prevention practices to low-wage, mid-size employers in King County, Washington.

PEARLS (Program to Encourage Active, Rewarding Lives for Seniors) Dissemination Study is a randomized controlled trial evaluating an implementation management team approach to improve PEARLS's reach among depressed older adults in Washington State.
Ciechanowski P, Chaytor N, Miller J, Fraser R, Russo J, Unutzer J, et al. PEARLS Depression Treatment for Individuals with Epilepsy: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Epilepsy Behav. 2010;19:225-231.

Purchaser's Guide to Clinical Preventive Services Implementation Evaluation was a randomized controlled trial evaluating the effectiveness of a tailored approach to disseminating information on health insurance benefits for preventive services to members of the National Business Group on Health.

Reaching Employees' Spouses/Partners with the American Cancer Society's "Workplace Solutions" combines two related studies to assess the feasibility of employers offering a package of evidence-based chronic disease prevention practices to the spouses/partners of employees.

Information on Dissemination and Dissemination Research

Damschroder LJ, Aron DC, Keith RE, Kirsh SR, Alexander JA, Lowery JC. Fostering implementation of health services research findings into practice: a consolidated framework for advancing implementation science. Implement Sci. 2009;4:50.

Glasgow RE, Lichtenstein E, Marcus AC.Why don't we see more translation of health promotion research to practice? Rethinking the efficacy-to-effectiveness transition. Am J Public Health. Aug 2003;93(8):1261-1267.

Grier S, Bryant CA. Social marketing in public health. Annu Rev Public Health. 2005;26:319-39.

Greenhalgh T, Robert G, Macfarlane F, Bate P, Kyriakidou O. Diffusion of innovations in service organizations: Systematic review and recommendations. Milbank Q. 2004;82(4):581-629.

Kerner, J. Translating Research into Policy and Practice: Who's Influencing Whom? Presentation at the Academy Health National Health Policy Conference, February 13, 2007, Washington, DC.

Kerner J, Rimer B, Emmons K. Introduction to the special section on dissemination: dissemination research and research dissemination: How can we close the gap? Health Psychol. 2005 Sep;24(5):443-6.

Kreuter MW, Bernhardt JM. Reframing the dissemination challenge: a marketing and distribution perspective. Am J Public Health. 2009 Dec;99(12):2123-7.

Lomas J. Diffusion, dissemination, and implementation: who should do what? Ann N Y Acad Sci. 1993 Dec 31;703:226-35; discussion 35-7.

NIH Conference on the Science of Dissemination and Implementation: Building Research Capacity to Bridge the Gap From Science to Service. January 28-29, 2009. Bethesda, Maryland. Post-conference materials.

Rogers EM. Diffusion of Innovations. 5th ed. New York, NY: Free Press; 2003.

Wandersman A, Duffy J, Flaspohler P, Noonan R, Lubell K, Stillman L, et al. Bridging the gap between prevention research and practice: the interactive systems framework for dissemination and implementation. Am J Community Psychol. 2008 Jun;41(3-4):171-81.