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Youth wellbeing research: evidence to practice, translation of knowing to doing



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12 November 2010

The AIMhi program of research has been involved in wellbeing intervention studies with Indigenous people for the past six years.  The findings of this program of work have been translated into a training program and tools and resources which service providers and the broader public have accessed in increasing numbers with highly positive feedback. Knowledge translation is an interactive process between researchers and end users of their evidence. To date the focus of much of AIMhi research translation has been on health services and health providers. This has been strengthened by strong partnerships between the AIMhi team and services.

Over time, the AIMhi focus has shifted from mental health and primary care to a broader audience which now includes: chronic disease, perinatal, child and maternal and youth services. In particular the resonance of AIMhi findings to the needs of youth wellbeing service providers has been increasingly recognised. The AIMhi program has well developed strategies that promote knowledge translation to health settings. The transition to a youth focus, however, brings with it a need for new research translation strategies as the ‘health service’ becomes less pivotal and schools and community based services grow in importance.

This presentation will analyse the successful components of AIMhi research transfer, present a practical framework for research utilisation, and compare and contrast two current AIMhi studies in terms of the potential impact on practice. It will be of particular interest to researchers who are designing studies aiming for maximal impact, and for end-users of evidence at service level who seek partnerships with research organisations. It highlights that the ‘know-how’ of service providers is essential to the translation of ‘knowing’ (evidence) to ‘doing’ (practice).

Associate Professor Tricia Nagel, Valerie Thompson and Rama Jayaraj - Menzies School of Health Research