Carolyn Pullen (Canadian Cardiovascular Society) Marie-Josée Martin (Sunergia Management)
In a 2003 NEJM special issue on knowledge translation (KT), Claude Lenfant urged specialty societies to assume a greater role in ensuring guidelines influence the way medicine is practiced.
In answer, in 2005, the CCS launched a multi-year KT program to implement Canadian heart failure guidelines and evaluate their impact.
The CCS ‘closed-loop’ Model, now in its 7th annual cycle, enables ongoing performance measure- ment and improvement of guideline development processes including: end-user needs assessment; multi-disciplinary development of recommendations; multi-pronged dissemination strategies; end-user tools; evaluation; and analysis and planning for the next cycle. Dissemination occurs through publica- tion in journals, web-based programs, multimedia tools, and workshops. Recommendations are evi- dence based and “Practical Tips” suggest helpful approaches.
The CCS has introduced a number of quality-control measures in its process including a standardized literature review protocol and the adoption of the AGREE II instrument and the GRADE system for recommendations.
The Model is feasible and responsive to end-users, achieving wide acceptance amongst a multidisci- plinary target audience.
The CCS Heart Failure Guideline program has:
Presented over 40 workshops, reaching 4000+ health care professionals
Distributed 15,000 pocket guides
Received over 600,000 hits per year to its dedicated guidelines website, providing thousands of downloads
Extended a similar guideline process for Atrial Fibrillation Guidelines, based on the success experienced with Heart Failure.
The CCS is excited to share this Model with others interested in effective approaches to supporting KT.