From research to clinical practice: Considerations in moving research into people's hands. Personal reflections that may be useful to others
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It may take many years for published clinical research findings to be found, understood, adopted and applied in practice. In recognition of this delay, many jurisdictions and agencies are now promoting a stronger link between research and its dissemination in useable forms that will enable practitioners to access, understand and use new ideas. The purpose of this paper, first presented as a keynote address at the 15th Annual Meeting of the European Academy of Childhood Disability in Oslo in October 2003, is to share experiences of the author and his colleagues at a childhood disability system-linked research centre in Ontario, Canada. The lessons learned include the value of striving to describe one's findings in plain language; writing study reports for parents and children who are involved in research studies; using multiple methods to disseminate one's work; and making explicit the potential importance and applicability of the findings to readers of the work. Engaging end users at many stages of the development and field testing of one's work will enhance buy-in and lend added credibility to the work, as well as influencing content and process as the research unfolds. The result is likely to be greater recognition of 'familiar' aspects of the research and the adoption of relevant findings.
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