The increasing interest in Implementation Science was highlighted by strong attendance to Sydney Health Partners’ second annual Implementation Science Masterclass, which attracted more than 60 local healthcare professionals to the University of Sydney.

“There’s a buzz developing around Implementation Science, and the huge level of interest in the Masterclass this year was evidence of that,” said Sydney Health Partners and University of Sydney Senior Research Fellow, Dr Nicole Rankin. “I think that’s because there is a growing recognition that the implementation of research into practice is complex and does not happen automatically.”

Macquarie University Professor and Master Class guest presenter Simon French spoke to participants about the need for translational research, which is challenging the “all breakthrough and no follow-through” approach to scientific discovery.

“Traditionally, research funding has been focussed on new discoveries but, if we concentrated on implementing the things we already know, we could make a huge difference to patient outcomes,” he said.

The President of the Health Services Research Association of Australia and New Zealand, Associate Professor Rachael Morton, said a challenge for translational researchers is to convince health service leaders about the value proposition of IS.

“As a health economist at the NHMRC Clinical Trials Centre I have become more and more interested in this area,” she said. “I think there’s growing awareness that if you really want to see research have impact then new interventions need to be adopted in a more scientific way.”

Executive Research Lead in Cancer Nutrition at Sydney Local Health District, Merran Findlay, presented a case study of successful research implementation.

She told the Master Class “I now realise I was interested in Implementation Science before I knew what it was called. When I found others who thought the same way as me it was a revelation!”

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