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Outcomes-Focused Knowledge Translation: A Framework for Knowledge Translation and Patient Outcomes Improvement


Address correspondence to Dr. Diane M. Doran, Faculty of Nursing, University of Toronto, 155 College Street, Suite 130, Toronto, ON, M5T 1P8;


Background: Regularly accessing information that is current and reliable continues to be a challenge for front-line staff nurses. Reconceptualizing how nurses access information and designing appropriate decision support systems to facilitate timely access to information may be important for increasing research utilization.

Description of Strategy: An outcomes-focused knowledge translation framework was developed to guide the continuous improvement of patient care through the uptake of research evidence and feedback data about patient outcomes. The framework operationalizes the three elements of the PARIHS framework at the point of care.

Outcomes-focused knowledge translation involves four components: (a) patient outcomes measurement and real-time feedback about outcomes achievement; (b) best-practice guidelines, embedded in decision support tools that deliver key messages in response to patient assessment data; (c) clarification of patients' preferences for care; and (d) facilitation by advanced practice nurses and practice leaders. In this paper the framework is described and evidence is provided to support theorized relationships among the concepts in the framework.

Implications: The framework guided the design of a knowledge translation intervention aimed at continuous improvement of patient care and evidence-based practice, which are fostered through real-time feedback data about patient outcomes, electronic access to evidence-based resources at the point of care, and facilitation by advanced practice nurses. The propositions in the framework need to be empirically tested through future research.

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