Enhancing the translation of health behaviour change research into practice: A selective conceptual review of the synergy between implementation science and health psychology

Justin Presseau, Lucie Byrne-Davis, Sarah Hotham, Fabiana Lorencatto, Sebastain Potthoff, Lou Atkinson, Eleanor Bull, Alexandra L. Dima, Anne van Dongen, David French, Nelli Hankonen, Jo Hart, Gill ten Hoor, Kristian Hudson, Dominika Kwasnicka, Sanne van Lieshout, Jennifer McSharry, Ellinor K. Olander, Rachael Powell, Elanie ToomeyMolly Byrne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Health psychology is at the forefront of developing and disseminating evidence, theories, and methods that have improved the understanding of health behaviour change. However, existing evidence dissemination approaches may be insufficient for promoting the broader application and impact of findings to benefit the health of patients and the public. Health psychology is contributing to the science of implementing research into practice. Behaviour change theory and methods typically directed towards health behaviours are now being used to understand and change the behaviour of individuals at different levels of the health system whose own behaviour impacts the delivery of evidence-based health behaviour change interventions. Despite this contribution to the science of implementation, health psychology is perhaps doing less to draw from implementation science. We propose that a redoubled focus on implementation science in health psychology could provide novel prospects for enhancing the impact of health behaviour change evidence. In this article, we report a journal-specific review of reviews of trials of health behaviour change interventions published in Health Psychology Review from inception to April 2020. We identified 34 reviews and assessed whether implementation readiness of health behaviour change intervention was discussed. We then narratively review ways in which implementation science has integrated theory and methods from health psychology and related disciplines to inform the science of how to improve health care. Finally, we demonstrate how greater synergy between implementation science and health psychology could help promote greater follow-through on advances made in the science of health behaviour change.
Original languageEnglish
JournalHealth psychology review
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 15 Dec 2020

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