The DoD/VA Practice-Based Implementation (PBI) Network is an infrastructure that bridges the gap between mental health research and clinical practice in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) and the Department of Defense (DoD), and serves to more rapidly translate research findings by facilitating practice changes.
The PBI Network consists of subject matter experts located in member network clinics who are poised to translate selected innovations in both departments.
Based on the principles of implementation science, the network was designed as a means to engage clinicians and leaders in the piloting of evidence-based treatments and other emerging best practices to help veterans and service members address psychological health-related problems.
Partnerships with clinicians and managers ensure that real-world perspectives on change are carefully considered, and that attention is given to local solutions developed by participating facilities.
In recent years, the development of effective mental health treatment strategies consistent with VA/DoD clinical practice guidelines has contributed significantly to evidence-based practice changes. Yet widespread implementation of the use of evidence-based practices remains a challenge; successful implementation relies heavily on collaboration and communication among stakeholders.
The PBI Network creates the opportunity for conversations between clinicians, leaders and researchers to develop effective structures and implementation systems for clinical innovations. The network promotes successful implementation by developing standardized training and facilitation processes as innovations are adopted.
Innovation-specific implementation plans can be adapted and developed to scale by incorporating feedback from clinicians and leaders from clinics worldwide who are implementing innovations and discovering barriers, facilitators and lessons learned. Evaluation of the implementation pilot then provides an opportunity for expert feedback and recommendations to senior leaders, ahead of decisions to mandate widespread practice changes in the system of care.
PBI Network Goals:
- Improve efficiency of new practice implementation through use of standing clinical implementation sites
- Increase involvement of field clinicians, managers and patients in the processes of implementation to ensure that real-world perspectives are carefully considered
- Identify barriers and facilitators of implementation and learn from local solutions developed by participating facilities
- Increase coordination, teamwork and information sharing across primary care, specialized PTSD treatment clinics and general mental health clinics
- Increase speed of innovation adoption
- Improve clinician skills and accountability for patient outcomes
- Enhance collaboration across departments
- Conduct and evaluate small scale and facility-based projects prior to enterprise change initiatives; avoid unnecessary failures and waste of resources
- Incorporate quality improvement methods, to include formative evaluation before, during and after implementation