Clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) distil an evidence base into recommendations. CPG adherence is associated with better patient outcomes. However, preparation and dissemination of CPGs are a costly task involving multiple skilled personnel. Furthermore, dissemination alone does not ensure CPG adherence. Reasons for nonadherence are often complex, but understanding practice variations and reasons for nonadherence is key to improving CPG adherence and harmonising clinically appropriate and cost-effective care.
To overview approaches to improving guideline adherence, to provide urology-specific examples of knowledge-practice gaps, and to highlight potential solutions informed by implementation science.
Three common approaches to implementation science (the Knowledge-To-Action framework, the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research, and the Behaviour Change Wheel), are summarised.
Three implementation problems in urology are illustrated: underuse of single instillation of intravesical chemotherapy in non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer, overuse of androgen deprivation therapy in localised prostate cancer, and guideline-discordant imaging in prostate cancer. Research using implementation science approaches to address these implementation problems is discussed.
Urologists, patients, health care providers, funders, and other key stakeholders must commit to reliably capturing and reporting data on patient outcomes, practice variations, guideline adherence, and the impact of adherence on outcomes. Leverage of implementation science frameworks is a sound next step towards improving guideline adherence and the associated benefits of evidence-based care.
Clinical practice guideline documents are created by expert panels. These documents provide overviews of the evidence for the tests and treatments used in patient care. They also provide recommendations and it is expected that in most circumstances clinicians will follow these recommendations. Sometimes, health care professionals cannot or do not follow these recommendations and it is not always clear why. In this review article we look at some examples of research approaches to addressing this problem of nonadherence and we provide some examples specific to urology.
European urology focus. 2021 Oct 23 [Epub ahead of print]
Steven MacLennan, Eilidh Duncan, Ted A Skolarus, Monique J Roobol, Veeru Kasivisvanathan, Kevin Gallagher, Giorgio Gandaglia, Vasileios Sakalis, Emma Jane Smith, Karin Plass, Maria J Ribal, James N'Dow, Alberto Briganti
Academic Urology Unit, Institute of Applied Health Sciences, The University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK; European Association of Urology Guidelines Office and Methodology Committee, Arnhem, The Netherlands. Electronic address: ., Health Services Research Unit, Institute of Applied Health Sciences, The University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK., Dow Division of Health Services Research, Department of Urology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Veterans Affairs Health Services Research & Development, Center for Clinical Management Research, VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System, Ann Arbor, MI, USA., Department of Urology, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands., Division of Surgery & Interventional Science, University College London, London, UK; Department of Urology, University College London Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK., Department of Urology, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh, UK., Department of Urology, University Vita e Salute-San Raffaele, Milan, Italy., Department of Urology, General Hospital Agios Pavlos, Thessaloniki, Greece., European Association of Urology Guidelines Office, Arnhem, The Netherlands., European Association of Urology Guidelines Office, Arnhem, The Netherlands; Uro-Oncology Unit, Hospital Clinic, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain., Academic Urology Unit, Institute of Applied Health Sciences, The University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK; European Association of Urology Guidelines Office, Arnhem, The Netherlands., Department of Urology, University Vita e Salute-San Raffaele, Milan, Italy; European Association of Urology Guidelines Office, Arnhem, The Netherlands.